By Tendar Tsering
Techung is joined by monks on the stage with candles in their hands as he performs his latest song "Lama Khen" in honour of the Tibetans who self-immolated in recent months on December 31, 2011 at Bodh Gaya, India.
BODH GAYA, January 2: The Central Tibetan Administration (CTA) offered “full support” to a group of Tibetan musicians who are organising a freedom concert dedicated to Tibetan martyrs during the Kalachakra teachings in Bodh Gaya.
Starting from December 31, the Alliance for Tibetan Musicians, a group of Tibetan artistes are holding a three-day freedom concert in Bodh Gaya in honor of Tibetan martyrs who have set themselves ablaze protesting Chinese rule over Tibet.
The concert had been veiled in some controversy following recent calls by sections in the Tibetan society to forego the upcoming Losar –Tibetan New Year celebrations.
The largest pro-independence group in exile, the Tibetan Youth Congress had urged Tibetans to forego Losar celebrations in February to show support and solidarity with the 12 Tibetans in Tibet who set themselves on fire since March 2011.
However, the Minister for the Department of Religion and Culture, CTA, Pema Chinnjor, while speaking at the freedom concert assured the organisers that the CTA had “no objections” with their initiative.
“We consider Tibetan musicians and singers as ambassadors of Tibet and your songs have been both powerful and emotional,” Chinnjor said.
“This is the 21st century, we need everything to coexist and cooperate in our struggle for freedom. We offer support to our artistes in their endeavour to preserve and promote Tibetan tradition, culture, and language all over the world,” the Minister added.
Speaking at the freedom concert, renowned Tibetan singer and composer and one of the main organisers of the event, Techung expressed regret at the dwindling opportunities for Tibetan artistes to showcase their expertise.
“It is evident that in my career spanning decades, I have sung and performed not merely to make a living but with the larger goal of preserving our unique tradition and promoting our struggle for freedom in the best way I know – by singing and composing,” the Tibetan singer said.
In an earlier interview with Phayul, Techung had called music and songs a binding factor in the scattered Tibetan community, while recounting the important role that music has played in inspiring, mobilising, and giving voice to freedom struggles all over the world.
"The wave of self-immolations in Tibet indicate that Tibetans are no longer able to tolerate the repressive Chinese policies and under such desperate circumstance, the exile Tibetans cannot remain inactive," Techung had said.