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110th anniversary of 13th Dalai Lama’s Tibetan independence declaration marked

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(TibetanReview.net, Feb15’23) – There is no Independence Day in the official annual calendar of the exile Tibetan administration, which may partly be because Tibet is still under Chinese occupation rule. Besides the middle way policy of the Central Tibetan Administration postulates an autonomous Tibet under Chinese rule. However, as before, two of the main Tibetan or Tibet campaign organizations marked the 110th anniversary of Tibetan Independence Day of Feb 13 in Dharamshala and Delhi.

In Dharamshala, Students for a Free Tibet-India (SFT-India), the Dharamshala-based branch of a New York-headquartered international group, organized a “majestic walk”, to highlight the event, reported the hindustantimes.com Feb 14.

Rinzin Choedon, National Director of SFT-India has said Tibetans commemorate the nation’s independent past on Feb 13 every year for it is a powerful expression of the people’s desire for freedom.

Likewise, Tenzin Lekdhen, SFT campaigns director, has said, “By publicly commemorating our proud history as an independent nation, a history that the Chinese government has spent more than 60 years trying to erase from the global consciousness, we are reclaiming our past for future generations while strengthening our struggle so that His Holiness the Dalai Lama and all Tibetans can one day reunite in a free Tibet,” said.

Earlier, on Feb 11, the Tibetan Youth Congress, the exile Tibetans’ largest international membership-based organization based in Dharamshala, held a Rangzen (Independence) concert at Majnu ka Tila Tibetan colony in Delhi.

As a part of the grand celebrations, Tibetans performed songs and dances, which demonstrated the Tibetan culture and aspiration for independence, reported the ibtimes.co.in Feb 12.

In Bangladesh, a solidarity rally was held and a human chain formed under the aegis of a group called Muktijoddha Mancha in front of the National Museum, Shahbag, in capital Dhaka.

The protesters carried banners “China Fails Human Rights”, “Tibet is Not Part of China”, “Free Tibet China Out” and many more, reported the ANI news service Feb 13.

The day marks the issuance of a proclamation of Tibet’s independence on Feb 13, 1913 by the 13th Dalai Lama. The proclamation said Tibet’s long-standing relationship with China had been one of priest and patron, between Tibetan Buddhism and the succession of Qing emperors, not with the nation of China. That with the fall of China’s last imperial dynasty and the establishment of the Republic of China, “the patron-priest relationship has faded like a rainbow in the sky.” That all agreements and understandings that had existed between Tibet and the Qing Dynasty were dissolved. And that Tibet was completely independent of China, noted the patheos.com Feb 12.

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