By Choekyi Lhamo
DHARAMSHALA, JAN 27: The 5th Global Vision for Young Tibetans’ Conference organised by Empowering the Vision concluded on Saturday at the Namgyal Institute of Tibetology, Gangtok, Sikkim. The conference saw 60 participants from India and Nepal. Health Kalon (Cabinet Minister) Mr. Choekyong Wangchuk of Central Tibetan Administration (CTA) attended the inaugural ceremony along with Mr. Kunga Nyima Lepcha, Minister of Human Resource Development of Sikkim. The conference is held every two years whereby it aims to create a platform for young Tibetans to encourage and inspire them to further work towards the Tibetan cause.
His Holiness extended his warm greetings to all the participants of the conference, “I understand that on this occasion the Empowering the Vision is bringing together 60 young Tibetans from India and Nepal under the theme ‘Mindful Tibetans with a Global Vision’. This is commendable. It is imperative that young Tibetans expand their mental horizons and look beyond the Tibetan community in this highly interdependent world. Given the violence that was witnessed in the 20th century, it falls on the shoulders of today’s young people, including Tibetans, to ensure that 21st century does not repeat the pain and bloodshed of the past.”
The conference invited various speakers from all over India who have also been past beneficiaries of events organised by Empowering the Vision: Tenzin Pelyoun, Tenzin Dhargyal, Bhuchung D. Sonam, Jamyang Phuntsok, Choekyi Lhamo, Tenzin Palbar, Tenzin Namkha, Tenzin Namdon and Lharong spoke to the participants of the conference about their personal journeys and achievements throughout their lives. The conference aims to inspire the young aspiring Tibetans who are yet to choose their field of study and work. The organisers allotted significant amount of time in after session discussions which allowed the participants to indulge in reflection and commentaries on the presentations by the respective panelists.
Participants from the KaDorGang (Kalimpong, Darjeeling and Gangtok) region were among the most prominent features of the conference since these dispersed communities are able to indulge only in few community driven activities. Scores of participants from Gangtok expressed their concern about the growing indifference among Tibetans due to lack of mutual indifference from both the parties. The issues discussed in the forum ranged from preserving the Tibetan language, poetry, gender equality, politics of exile, health, literature, journalism to the issue of language policing. The dynamic groups of participants were receptive and the importance of discussion and debate were at the centre of the conference.
When asked about the overall outcome of the 5th conference, the Director of the organisation, Youdon Aukatsang told Phayul, “The conference has more than lived up to my expectations. Not only did we have some brilliant speakers, even the participants were eager to learn and were fully engaged with a deep sense of ownership of the conference. I feel reassured that our future is in good hands.”