TIBET AWARENESS – SUPREME RULER OF TIBET FORCED TO LIVE IN EXILE
After Communist China’s military invasion of Tibet during 1950-51, both India and Tibet earnestly tried to resolve the crisis using peaceful negotiations. China took full military advantage of India’s inability to use military force to neutralize China’s Military Expansionism. India, and Tibet obtained limited assistance from the United States to counter China’s military conquest of Tibet. Futility of their efforts became apparent in March 1959 when China killed thousands of innocent Tibetan civilians who organized massive protest on 13th March to defend their Supreme Ruler.
His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama, Supreme Ruler of Tibet is currently visiting Assam, and Arunachal Pradesh. He had an emotional Reunion with Assam Rifles guard Naren Chandra Das on Sunday, April 02, in Guwahati.
Dalai Lama’s emotional reunion with guard who aided flight from Tibet
Buddhist leader meets Naren Chandra Das 58 years after he escorted him in India after his escape from Chinese authorities
MICHAEL SAFI in Delhi
Monday 3 April 2017
The first time they met, Indian paramilitary guard Naren Chandra Das was ordered not to talk to the bespectacled young soldier he was escorting near the Chinese border in a top-secret mission.
Nearly 60 years later, Das was reunited with the Dalai Lama in an emotional ceremony that recalled the Buddhist leader’s escape from Tibet after a failed uprising against Chinese authorities.
This time the Dalai Lama had the first word. “Looking at your face, I now realize I must be very old too,” he told Das, 79, at a ceremony on Sunday in the north-eastern city of Guwahati.
The ceremony is likely to fuel anger in Beijing over the Dalai Lama’s tour of north-east India, including Arunachal Pradesh, a border state with areas that China regards as its own territory.
The Dalai Lama said: ‘Looking at your face, I now realize I must be very old too,’ on meeting Naren Chandra Das again. Photograph: Biju Boro/AFP/Getty Images
It has warned India that the tour by the Dalai Lama, whom Beijing calls an “anti-China separatist”, will do serious damage to ties between the two Asian powers.
In Guwahati on Sunday the Dalai Lama – who denies seeking Tibetan independence – remembered the “warm-hearted” welcome he received in India after a 13-day trek through the Himalayas to escape the Chinese army.
“The days prior to my arrival in India were filled with tension and the only concern was safety, but I experienced freedom when I was received warm-heartedly by the people and officials and a new chapter began in my life,” he said.
The Dalai Lama fled his Lhasa palace in March 1959 when he was 23 after years of tension between Tibetans and the Chinese government erupted into popular rebellion.
Disguised as a Chinese soldier, he and members of his cabinet slipped out of the palace and trekked by night through mountains and across the 500-metre (1,640feet) Brahmaputra river to reach the Indian border.
The Dalai Lama and his escape party cross the Zsagola pass, in southern Tibet on 21 March 1959, while being pursued by Chinese military forces. The 23-year-old Dalai Lama is aboard the white horse. Photograph: HG/Associated Press
Until he appeared in India, some observers feared the Dalai Lama had been among the estimated 2,000 people killed when the Chinese crushed the uprising.
India offered him asylum and a home base in the hill town of Dharamsala, where he was permitted to set up a government-in-exile. About 80,000 Tibetan refugees soon joined him in the Himalayan town.
China argues the 1959 rebellion was the work of wealthy landowners bent on maintaining feudal rule, and that its “peaceful liberation” of the mountainous region has brought development and prosperity.
The Chinese foreign ministry on Monday reiterated its objection to the Dalai Lama’s tour of the border states, saying it was “resolutely opposed to any country’s support and facilitation for the 14th Dalai group’s anti-China separatist activities”.
Chinese anger over India’s role in sheltering the Dalai Lama was one of the factors that led to a brief war between the two countries in 1962. Cross-border incursions by Chinese troops are regularly reported and border areas of the state are highly militarized.
From the archive, 1 April 1959: Paratroops join hunt for Dalai Lama
Manchester Guardian, 1 April 1959: The Chinese were yesterday using planes and some fifty thousand troops to search the Tibetan mountain passes for the Dalai Lama
Like past Indian leaders, the prime minister, Narendra Modi, has maintained an official policy of treating the Dalai Lama as an “honored guest” in the country, inviting him to meet the Indian president in December – another event that drew Chinese condemnation.
India and Tibet share close cultural and religious ties and the Dalai Lama has regularly affirmed India’s sovereignty over the entirety of Arunachal Pradesh, including areas the Chinese government labels “south Tibet”.
Tibet remains under the tight control of the Chinese government and possessing pictures of the Dalai Lama or his writings is illegal.
On Sunday, the Dalai Lama appeared to whisper something to Das as the pair embraced during ceremony. Asked afterwards what the Buddhist leader had told him, Das said: “He was happy to see me.”