Sangay to be sworn-in as Tibet's PM-in-exile tom

 Sangay to be sworn-in as Tibet`s PM-in-exile tom New Delhi: Lobsang Sangay, the political successor to the Dalai Lama, will be sworn-in as Prime Minister of the Tibetan government-in-exile at a public ceremony in Dharamsala on Monday.

43-year-old Sangay will be administered the oath of office at a ceremony in the central courtyard of the main Tibetan temple, opposite to the office of the Dalai Lama.

Sangay succeeds Samdhong Rinpoche as the Kalon Tripa or the Prime Minister of the Central Tibetan Administration.

The oath will be administered by Ngawang Phelgyal, the Chief Justice Commissioner, in the presence of the spiritual leader of Tibetans -- the Dalai Lama.

Sangay will be the first to take charge of the office after the Dalai Lama announced his decision to devolve his political authority to the elected leadership. These changes were ratified by the Tibetan Parliament in May.

Born in Darjeeling and educated in Delhi, Sangay pursued higher studies in the US and was a senior Fellow at the Harvard Law School before being elected as the Kalon Tripa in April.

Besides pursuing law, he also organised conferences and seminars which were attended by several Chinese scholars during his 16-year stay in the US.

He believes that it will be hard for the Chinese to criticise his ascendance to the post as 8/8 (August 8) is considered as auspicious by them.

In a recent interview, the Tibetan leader pointed out that the Beijing Olympics were also launched on August 8, 2008 (8/8/8), an auspicious day according to Chinese beliefs.

Asked about reaching out to the Chinese leadership to find a solution to the Tibet issue, Sangay said he was willing to meet his Chinese counterpart "anytime, anywhere" but said there was lack of reciprocity from Beijing.

"I am willing to meet with my Chinese counterpart anytime, anywhere. The issue has always been the lack of reciprocity," he said.

On his priorities during his five-year term as Prime Minister, Sangay said he would strive to restore freedom for Tibetans and try and ensure the return of the Dalai Lama to Tibet.

Striking a more realistic note, he said laying a foundation for a stronger and sustainable Tibetan movement for the next 50 years would be a priority.

"Keeping the Tibet issue alive and creating awareness at the international level is very important," he said.

On the domestic front, Sangay's thrust will be on improving the education of Tibetans in exile.

"I want Tibetans to improve on Maths, Science and English language. That would make them get good jobs and help them emerge as effective leaders of the community," he said.