New Delhi, July 31: In a surprise visit this morning, Kasur Gyalo Thondup, elder brother of His Holiness the Dalai Lama, paid a visit to the hunger strikers. While expressing his deep concern for their health, he requested them to end the fast, and assured them that he will raise the cause of the TYC-led hunger strike tomorrow to the Chinese Government, through the Chinese Embassy in New Delhi.
Gyalo Dhondup made the following comments to the hunger strikers:
"Of course we all are disappointed with the current impasse. So with those feelings of helplessness, you all are starving yourself for the interest of the Tibetan people. Remaining without food for several days is an extremely difficult task, and that too in the hot and humid condition of Delhi, it is very dangerous. The risk of falling sick and then succumbing to death is extremely high. It will be a big loss for the Tibetan society if we lose you. So, the prime reason for my visit is to appeal to you to end the hunger strike today.
"The Tibetan Youth Congress is doing a great deal of work and they are intelligent, broad-minded and experienced. We would discuss on how to work together. Fundamentally, I believe that we should find out a way to settle the issue between China and ourselves through talks and dialogue.
"I have been visiting China for 28 years and I have been talking with the Chinese on the Tibet issue and the rights of the Tibetan people. Although, there is no concrete result out of those talks, I still believe that gradually we will have a meaningful outcome. I am told about the hunger strike, and that twenty-three days have gone without any response from China. I have thought deeply about it and I am very concerned. All of our wishes and goals are the same. But, if somebody dies that will be a big loss. All of you have families and relatives, near and dear ones and we too would be very sad if something happens to you. Your efforts will definitely not go in vain.
"Tomorrow morning, I will visit the Chinese Embassy and will raise your cause with the Chinese government. We will try our best from all corners. I will also request the executives of TYC to consider my request to end the hunger strike. Please take care of your health and please start eating and stop starving yourself." he said.
Later in the evening, two members of Indian Parliament visited the hunger strikers. Mr. Dharmendra Pradhan, Member of Parliament, Lower House, and National President of Bharatya Janata Yuva Manch, youth wing of BJP, and Mr. Brajbhushra Tiwari, Member of Parliament, Upper House, came to express their solidarity and support.
Mr. Tiwari said, "I admire the courage and determination of the fourteen hunger strikers. As, the Tibetan youths takes the reins of the Tibetan struggle, I am optimistic that Chinese government will be forced to listen to the demands of the Tibetan people. I wish you all the best."
On behalf of the Tibetan people in Musoorie, Tenzin Dolker, General Secretary of Regional Tibetan Youth Congress, and an executive of Regional Tibetan Women's Association, visited the hunger strikers to convey solidarity and support. She brought letters and drawings from the students of Mussorie Homes and VTC to the hunger strikers.
Tenzin Sangpo, President of the Dhondupling Tibetan Youth Association, along with an executive member, also brought several letters from youth members, monasteries and schools in Dhondupling in support and empathy with the hunger strikers.
The Indefinite Hunger Strike at Jantar Mantar, Delhi, is part of the Tibetan Youth Congress-led People's Movement, pressing demands for accountability from China regarding the Tibet situation.
For more information, visit: http://www.tibetanyouthcongress.org