Tibetan Youth Congress President Tsewang Rigzin (C), Vice President Dhondup Lhadar (R) and Tenzin Chokey (L) at the press conference on May 4, 2012. (Phayul photo/Norbu Wangyal)
DHARAMSHALA May 4: Tibetan Youth Congress, the largest pro-independence group in exile has withdrawn support to the exile Tibetan family, who are on a march to Tibet carrying a Chinese flag, calling their act a “blotch in exile history.”
Tsetan Dorjee, along with his mother, Dhumpo Kyi and sister Lhamo Kyi had began their March to Tibet from the exile Tibetan headquarters of Dharamshala on March 10, coinciding with the 53rd Tibetan National Uprising Day.
“For the first time in 53 years of exile history, Tsetan Dorjee and his family members through their recent march to Tibet campaign is seen parading the Chinese flag. This marks a blotch in our exile history,” Tsewang Rigzin, the president of the TYC told reporters earlier today.
Underscoring China’s policies of forcing Tibetans to raise the Chinese flag on rooftops and monasteries inside Tibet, TYC noted that Tibetans living in free countries should understand the background of China’s “shrewd attempts.”
“We should be mindful not to play into our adversaries’ interests,” TYC said in a release. “Being a Tibetan safeguarding our historical legacy becomes our responsibility and purpose of life.”
Speaking to Phayul earlier, Dorjee had said that parading the red flag was symbolic of his fight for the official Middle-Way policy and his willingness to stay under Beijing if granted genuine autonomy.
TYC, in the release, clarified that it has “no objection” to the marchers’ political inclinations but pointed out that no resolution has yet been reached on the Tibetan issue under the Middle-Way policy.
“Particularly, while Tibetans inside Tibet risk their lives to bring down the Chinese flag in their act of defiance against the Chinese oppression, here in a free country the action of a Tibetan carrying the Chinese flag completely contradicts the moral responsibilities of a Tibetan towards the struggle and historical legacy of Tibet,” TYC said.
Currently, the exile family is about to reach the Indo-Nepal border town of Gorakhpur after marching for nearly two months and covering over 1300 kms.
Initially, TYC had supported the march, hailing the “demands, spirit and dedication” of the three family members. However, after setting off from Dharamshala, the family sprang a surprise by carrying the Chinese flag along with Tibetan and Nepali flags.
“The TYC would like to explicitly state that it is disappointed and strongly opposes this act. Moreover it would like to assert that TYC both at the Centrex and regional level would henceforth refrain from recognizing or supporting this campaign”, the release noted.
However, the president of the Dharamshala based Middle Way Policy Organisation, Mogru Tenpa yesterday hailed Tsetan Dorjee’s act as standing in principle with the Central Tibetan Administration.