Dharamshala: The Dalai Lama`s special envoy
Lodi Gyari, who has led the Tibetan side to nine rounds of
talks with Beijing, has said he has no intentions to contest
the election for Tibetan Prime Minister-in-Exile.
In a message posted on a Tibetan language website, Gyari,
a Tibetan diplomat and former minister thanked his friends and
supporters and said that he has no intentions to stand in the
elections for PM seat.
Gyari, a Tibetan diplomat residing in Washington D.C, was
one of the 19 candidates whose names were posted on the
website as contenders for the post of Prime Minister.
However, after his refusal to contend for the top post,
former minister Tenzin Namgyal Tethong and Harvard law
graduate Lobsang Sangay are the favourites among the Tibetan
diaspora which will go to preliminary polls on October 3, 2010
and final polls on March 20, 2011.
Meanwhile, the Tibetan Women’s Association has decided to
hold "Mock election of PM" on the occasion of 76th Birth Day
of the Dalai Lama on July 7 with an aim to ensure at least 75
per cent turnout of voters in two rounds of elections for the
post of PM.
The election of the second Prime Minister of the Tibetan
Government-in-Exile, who will succeed Prof Samdong Rinpoche on
completion of his tenure in August 2011, is considered an
As part of further democratization of the exile
government, the Dalai Lama announced landmark reforms in 2000,
calling for direct election of the Prime minister and in the
first election in 2001, Prof Samdong Rinpoche was elected as
the first Kalon Tripa ( Prime minister) of the exile
government and was re-elected in 2006.
The charter of the Tibetan exiles bars a candidate from
serving more than two consecutive terms.
The 2011 Kalon Tripa election is consequential,
suggestive of the exile government’s direction in the coming
five years and future of Tibetan struggle when the Dalai Lama
will turn 80.
Meanwhile, Tibet`s government-in-exile has reacted
angrily to China`s reported move to determine "who will
succeed the Dalai Lama when he dies".
"Neither the Tibetans in Tibet nor those in the free
world would recognize a Dalai Lama appointed by China," Tseten
Samdup Chhoekyapa, the Dalai Lama`s representative in Geneva,
"The Dalai Lama is there to lead the Tibetan people both
spiritually and politically but any Lama appointed by the
Chinese would have a hidden agenda, the control of the Tibetan
people," he observed.
"Tibet has been led by different leaders believed to be
incarnation of Dalai Lama and inhabited by the soul of a
Bodhisattva, or enlightened for the past 400 years,"
But the current and 14th Dalai Lama, Tenzin Gyatso, was
forced into exile in 1959 following a failed uprising against
Chinese rule and since then, he has peacefully campaigned for
limited autonomy for his homeland, he said.
"However, China, accuses him of being a violent terrorist
intent on returning Tibet to feudalism and dividing the
People`s Republic," he said.
On Thursday, a senior Communist Party official explained
to foreign journalists how it would stop future Dalai Lamas
from causing as much trouble as Gyatso.
From now on, the selection of reincarnations -- known to
the Chinese as living Buddhas -- would follow a set process
and end with approval from Beijing.
Chhoekyapa said that it was also possible that the Dalai
Lama may decide that his successor will be found outside Tibet
as it has happened before in case of the fourth Dalai Lama,
materialized in Mongolia and the sixth in India.