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Dalai Lama’s Arunachal visit cancelled?

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(TibetanReview.net, Oct10’23) – Following the postponement of his Oct 16-22 visits to Gangtok and Salugara in Sikkim and West Bengal respectively, the Dalai Lama’s planned Oct-Nov 2023 visit to Arunachal Pradesh has been cancelled, reported arunachaltimes.in Oct 10.

The report suggested that the information had come from the state government, although a notice from the office of His Holiness Dalai Lama issued on Oct 8 only mentioned the postponement of his Gangtok and Salugara visits, without any mention of the Arunachal leg of his tour.

The Dalai Lama was supposed to visit the state between October and November this year. Officials did not give a reason for the cancellation of the visit, the report said.

Nevertheless, the visit, should it take place, will be the Dalai Lama’s eighth to the state.

This would have been the eighth visit of the revered spiritual leader to the state, who escaped from Tibet to India via Ken-Dze-Mane, Jemethang, Tawang on Mar 31, 1959, where he and his entourage were received by Indian officials and escorted to Bomdila, the report said.

The Dalai Lama first visited the state, following his 1959 escape from Tibet, in March-May, 1983. This was followed by visits in Dec 1996, Oct 1997, and May and Dec 2003. His last visit to the state was 2017.

The latest cancelled visit of the 88-year-old Buddhist spiritual leader may be the result of geopolitical complications, as Chinese and Indian relations have become more than frosty in recent years, the report suggested.

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