In a message to China, PM Modi wishes Dalai Lama a happy birthday, BJP brass attends ceremony

Prime Minister Narendra Modi On Wednesday, Tibetan spiritual leader called the Dalai Lama and wished him on his 87th birthday. In his tweet, PM Modi said: “Wishing His Holiness the Dalai Lama on his 87th birthday over the phone earlier today. We wish him long life and good health.”

In Dharamsala, Himachal Pradesh, where the Dalai Lama permanently resides, his birthday was celebrated at Tsuglagkhang, the main Buddhist temple.

Last year also, PM Modi called the Dalai Lama to wish him on his birthday. This seemingly benign phone call has significant meaning in the context of India-China diplomatic relations. While Prime Minister Modi congratulated the Dalai Lama on his birthday in 2015, for the next few years, no such congratulations were publicly expressed, apparently taking into account Chinese sensitivity to the issue. .

The Dalai Lama is highly respected India and as a spiritual leader abroad. However, due to Chinese sentiments about Tibetans and their spiritual leader, successive Indian governments have maintained a ‘safe political distance’ from them in order not to disturb China. But in recent times India-China relations have seen a visible change from the Indian side, especially after the Galwan Valley incident, and the Dalai Lama’s birthday to publicly mark the highest level of leadership. It’s called a subtle. Message to the Chinese side.

Several senior BJP leaders have also reached Dharamsala to attend the spiritual leader’s birthday celebrations this year. Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur virtually attended the function as the chief guest. Its public exposure by senior BJP leaders is a clear indication that both the party and the government at the Center are not shying away from getting closer to the Dalai Lama – a sign that may not go down well with the Chinese government.

In Delhi, where Tibetans had gathered to celebrate the birthday, Union Minister of State Meenakshi Lekhi was invited as the chief guest. Another minister of state at the Center, SP Baghel, was also present on the occasion. The organizers of the event, however, said that both the ministers were not present at the event in their official capacity but in their personal capacity.

Speaking at the event, Lekhi mentioned how the Dalai Lama calls himself the son of India. He said, “India is not the country where he was born, but certainly India is a country he respects and considers his own. He is someone who has adopted India as his mother. “

Birthday greetings to the Dalai Lama continue from all over the world. Congratulating him on his birthday, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said in a statement that “His Holiness has worked hard to promote peace, encourage inter-religious harmony, and advocate for the preservation of the Tibetan language among his fellow Tibetans and many around the world.” bring light to the people and the culture”. The US secretary also said that “the United States will continue to support His Holiness and the Tibetan community’s efforts to preserve Tibet’s distinctive linguistic, religious and cultural traditions, including the ability to freely choose their own religious leaders.” Is”.

The Dalai Lama, along with many of his supporters, fled Tibet more than half a century ago, seeking refuge in India after Chinese troops invaded the capital, Lhasa, in 1959. He is living in Dharamsala, Himachal Pradesh. The Tibetan government-in-exile operates from India and there are over 160,000 Tibetans living in the country.

The Dalai Lama is revered not only among Tibetans but around the world. Every year his birthday is celebrated with enthusiasm by his followers. Many celebrities come to Dharamsala in Himachal Pradesh to seek his blessings. This year also Hollywood actor Richard Gere was seen attending the birthday celebrations in Dharamsala.

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