By Shyamal Sinha
Tibetans and Tibet supporters gathered at Tsuglagkhang courtyard to join the official celebration of the 28th anniversary of the conferment of Nobel Peace prize on His Holiness the Dalai Lama by the Nobel Committee in 1989. The chief guest at the celebration was Shri Ram Swaroop Sharma, a member of parliament from the governing party of India.
The celebration was attended by Officiating President Kalon Sonam Topgyal Khorlatsang, Deputy Speaker Acharya Yeshi Phunstok, Chief Justice Commissioner Kargyu Dhondup along with members of the Kashag, Tibetan parliament-in-Exile and the Tibetan Supreme Justice Commission. Officials of the Central Tibetan Administration, representatives of Tibetan non-governmental organisations and members of the local Tibetan public also joined the dignitaries in the celebration.
In his address, Shri Ram Swaroop Sharma expressed gratitude to His Holiness the Dalai Lama for making Dharamshala special for everyone across the world through his messages of love and peace.
He described His Holiness the Dalai Lama as a beacon of grace and humility, and called on the Indian government at the centre to bestow its most highest honour ‘the Bharat Ratna’ on His Holiness the Dalai Lama. He said, “as members of the All Party Indian Parliamentary Forum for Tibet led by Shri Shanta Kumar, former Chief Minister of Himachal Pradesh, we call on the Indian government to confer the Bharat Ratna on His Holiness the Dalai Lama. We are also making efforts to invite His Holiness the Dalai Lama to address a joint session of the Indian parliament.”
He expressed hope that their appeal would come to fruition soon and said that it will be a great day for all when His Holiness will receive the Bharat Ratna and address the Indian parliament.
The Indian lawmaker also expressed India’s fervent support for the Tibetan freedom movement, and said he is hopeful that the day is not far when the Tibet issue would be resolved and Tibetans and Indians will celebrate the joyous occasion together.
Officiating President Kalon Sonam Topgyal Khorlatsang read out the statement of the Kashag and Deputy Speaker Acharya Yeshi Phuntsok read out the statement of the Tibetan Parliament-in-Exile.
The celebration also included cultural performances from the Tibetan Institute of Performing Arts, and by teachers and students of upper and lower Tibetan Children’s Villages.