Seeking autonomy for Tibet, not independence: Dalai Lama

Jammu: The Dalai Lama on Thursday said that more and more Chinese people are realizing that he does not seek independence but rather meaningful autonomy within the Chinese state.

“Not Chinese people, but some Chinese hardliners consider me a separatist. Now, more and more Chinese are realizing that Dalai Lama is not seeking independence but within China meaningful autonomy to preserve Tibetan Buddhist culture,” the Tibetan spiritual leader said as he landed in Jammu. He is scheduled to visit Ladakh on Friday, a trip that is likely to needle China.

The Dalai Lama arrived in Jammu to a warm welcome by his followers who turned up in large numbers despite heavy rains. This was his first visit outside Dharamshala in Himachal Pradesh in the last two years. Advocating resolution to all disputes through dialogue, he asserted that all human beings are equal and they need to rise above the narrow-minded approach of “my nation, my ideology” which is the main trigger for fights among people.

Asked about China’s objection to his visit, the Dalai Lama said, “This is usual. The Chinese people are not objecting. More and more Chinese are showing interest in Tibetan Buddhism. Some of their scholars are realizing that Tibetan Buddhism is very scientific. Things are changing.”

The Dalai Lama, whose real name is Tenzin Gyatso, received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1989 and is feted worldwide for his advocacy of independence for Tibet. After a failed anti-Chinese uprising in 1959, the 14th Dalai Lama fled Tibet and came to India where he set up a government-in-exile.

Image courtesy of (Image Courtesy: Dalai Lama.com)

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