A poster of the event celebrating His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s 74th birthday on Monday, July 6, 2009, in New Delhi, India
Dharamsala, July 5: Several Indian leaders, including former president of India Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam and Chief Ministers of Himalayan states, are expected to attend a special celebration event on Monday to mark His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s 74th birthday in the Indian capital of New Delhi.
Himalayan Buddhist Cultural Association in collaboration with All Buddhist Organization of Himalayan Region have planned the grand celebration event “as a tribute of gratitude to His Holiness the Dalai Lama and the people of Tibet,” a press release of the event said.
On this auspicious occasion, with the divine presence of His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Former President of India, Honorable Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam will be the Chief Guest, the statement said of the event to be held at Mavalankar Hall, Rafi Marg, in New Delhi.
“Chief Ministers of all Himalayan States namely, Jammu & Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Uttrakhand, Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh and the Spiritual religious head of the Himalaya region will grace the function as Guest of Honor and Special Guest respectively,” it added.
“As India and Tibet shares an aged-old bilateral relations of Guru-Shisya parampara
, His Holiness the Dalai Lama has been instrumental in benefiting and enriching the people of Himalayan region,” it said.
However, Sikkim CM Mr Pawan Chamling and Jammu & Kashmir CM Mr Omar Abdullah, although they had confirmed their participation earlier, are unlikely to attend the event due to last minute inconveniences, according to organizers.
Himachal Pradesh CM Prem Kumar Dhumal and Arunachal Pradesh CM Dorjee Khandu are already in the capital to join the event, Tenzin Lekshay, a coordinator for the event told Phayul.com
According to Lekshey, situation in Kashmir could be the reason for Abdulla’s cancellation, but refused to comment on Sikkim CM’s position. Lekshey also said he could not confirm the participation of Uttrakhand's new chief minister, Dr Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank.
“However, in their absence, they have respectively deputed high-level state representatives to attend the event,” Lekshey said.
“It is going to be a very, very big function and right now we are not able to estimate how many people will turn up,” Lekshey said.
“And there are several cultural troupes from different regional places of the Himalayan states performing for the event tomorrow,” he added.
In Dharamsala, the seat of Tibet’s government in exile, and elsewhere around the world, Tibetans exiles will hold celebrations to mark their revered and supreme leader’s birthday. As part of the celebration, Tibetans will offer prayers for the well being and long life of their leader.
In Dharamsala, Dalai lama’s birthday celebration kick-started on Sunday afternoon with an Indo-Tibetan cultural show at the Tibetan Institute of Performing Arts (TIPA). Several Indian and Tibetan officials too part in a special event organized by a leading Indian daily newspaper Amar Ujala
. During the show, school children and professional artistes from the local Indian and Tibetan communities performed musical plays and cultural dances.