Missing 11th Panchen Lama is living in Tibet: China

Last Updated: Sunday, March 7, 2010 - 17:16

Beijing: A young boy who disappeared after
being appointed as second highest Tibetan Buddhist religious
leader by the Dalai Lama is living with his family somewhere
in Tibet, a top Chinese official said on Sunday.

"As far as I know, his family and he are now living a
very good life in Tibet... he and his family are reluctant to
be disturbed, they want to live an ordinary life and they want
to live an ordinary life," Padma Choling, chairman of the
Tibet autonomous regional government, told media at the
National People`s Congress meet here.

Gendun Choekyi Nyima, now 20, was named as the
reincarnation of the 10th Panchen Lama in 1995 by the Dalai
Lama, Tibetan Buddhism`s highest figure whom Beijing views as
a separatist. The boy and his family, who are from a remote
part of Tibet, have not been heard from since.

Chinese officials, however, selected another boy,
Gyaltsen Norbu (also 20), as the Panchen, to counter the Dalai
Lama`s nominee.

The so-called "Panchen Lama" picked by the Dalai Lama
was illegitimate and invalid, Choling said, adding that the
"soul boy" picked by the Dalai Lama as the reincarnation of
the 10th Panchen Lama was a victim.

The Panchen Lama appointed by Dalai Lama and his
family are now living a good life as ordinary citizens in
Tibet, and some of his elder sisters and brothers are in
universities or have already started working, Choling said.

"The reincarnation cannot be decided by certain
individuals, it must follow strict religious rituals," Choling
said and asserted that the 11th Panchen Lama, appointed by the
Chinese government was deeply loved and supported by people of
all ethnic groups in Tibet.

The Panchen Lama goes back to Tibet every year and
holds religious activities at Zhaxi Lhunbo Lamasery in Xigaze,
the seat of successive Panchen Lamas, he said.

Bainqen Erdini Qoigyijabu was in the lime light few
days ago as he as appointed to the CPPCC, the second
legislature.

Cholang said Tibet has nothing to hide and will make
visits to the region more easy in the future.

"As always, we welcome tourists, journalists and
government officials to visit Tibet and take a look there to
better understand the region`s current situation," he said,
quoting a Chinese saying that "seeing is believing."

Commenting on Tibet`s regulations on foreigners`
access to the region, he said it is "a very special place" due
to its "high altitude, its inconvenient traffic" in addition
to other limited conditions.

The selection of the 11th Panchen Lama Bainqen Erdini
Qoigyijabu, was approved by the Chinese government through
lot-drawing in 1995 in strict accordance with religious
rituals and historical conventions in Tibetan Buddhism,"
Choling was quoted as saying by the Xinhua news agency.

The 14th Dalai Lama fled Tibet to India soon after the
failed 1959 uprising against Chinese rule, and the effective
collapse of the Tibetan resistance movement led by him.

PTI



First Published: Sunday, March 7, 2010 - 17:16

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