(TibetanReview.net, Jun24, 2018) – Heads of the Tibetan settlements in India, Nepal and Bhutan have gathered at Dharamshala for their annual conference called by the Central Tibetan Administration (CTA) to discuss a range of issues over Jun 22-26. The CTA’s Tibet.net Jun 22 listed the Dalai Lama’s well being, sustenance of the Tibetan settlements, and the 5/50 Vision of the CTA as three of the seven main items on the conference’s agenda.
Dangers to the Dalai Lama’s personal safety are perceived as coming from China through spies and a section of worshippers of the controversial Dorje Shugden spirit.
Due to lack of citizenship rights and job opportunities, Tibetan settlements are increasingly seeing their youths, especially the educated ones, but also even the middle aged, emigrating to the West, many relying on human traffickers at high costs often paid with usurious loans.
Under its 5/50 Vision, the CTA strives to get China interested to start talks with the Dalai Lama or his envoys by the year 2021 towards granting autonomy to Tibet and to otherwise sustain the cause for autonomy for 50 years.
Officiating CTA President Ven Karma Gelek Yuthok, the minister for Religion and Culture and the chief guest, was cited as saying the issue of sustaining the settlements was the need of the hour requiring special and immediate attention.
He has cautioned the settlement heads to approach their respective state governments with tact while seeking welfare and rehabilitation assistance, ensuring that they do not create misunderstanding among the local populace. This had recently happened in Arunachal Pradesh where local groups felt, very erroneously, that Tibetans were being favoured at the expense of the state’s indigenous inhabitants.
The gathering was also addressed by the CTA’s Home Minister, Kalon Sonam Topgyal Khorlatsang. He has outlined his department’s efforts to provide housing to all Tibetans in India, particularly the newly arrived from Tibet. He has explained that those holding Indian or foreign passports were not eligible to reside in designated Tibetan settlements in India.
Others who addressed the settlement heads on the inaugural day were stated to include Mr Amitabh Mathur, adviser to the Union home minister of India, and officers from the local Foreigners Registration Office who spoke on the online renewal, registration and issuance of RC, IC and Exit permit for Tibetans.
The settlement heads received an audience with the Dalai Lama on Jun 22 at his residence.