DHARAMSHALA, April 25: In memory of the 10th Panchen Lama, the Dharamshala based National Democratic Party of Tibet yesterday screened a biopic on the late Panchen Lama Lobsang Lhundrup Choekyi Gyaltsen at the TCV Day School in the exile Tibetan headquarters.
Over a hundred Tibetans including Members of Parliament were present to watch the 40-minute-long biopic and songs in remembrance of the 10th Panchen Lama.
“Today as we mark the 24th birth anniversary of the 11th Panchen Lama Gedhun Choekyi Nyima, we also remember with great fondness and extend our gratitude for the enormous contribution the late 10th Panchen Lama Lobsang Lhundrup Choekyi Gyaltsen has made towards Tibet’s political, religious, social and cultural identity,” said Gelek Jamyang, President of National Democratic Party of Tibet.
“We would like to remind the Chinese government of their brutal acts of the sudden killing of the 10th Panchen Lama and thereafter having snatched and incarcerated his reincarnation recognised by His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama.”
The group also demanded the whereabouts and condition of the 11th Panchen Lama and his family through reliable international news outlets.
The 10th Panchen Lama wrote the famous 70,000-character petition about the Tibetan people’s plight under Chinese rule in 1962. The petition, criticizing Chinese government’s Tibet policy, was met with violent and scornful reaction from Mao Zedong, who called it a “poisoned arrow shot at the party.” The Panchen Lama was condemned without trial and spent the following 14 years in prison or under virtual house arrest.
In 1978, he was freed after which he traveled extensively throughout Tibet working to preserve the Tibetan culture, and improve the lives of the Tibetan people. During his last visit to Tibet in 1989, the Panchen Lama gave an extraordinary public speech in Shigatse, the seat of the Tashi Lhunpo Monastery, where he publicly criticised China’s policies in Tibet and declared his loyalty to His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama.
Shortly after the address, on January 28, 1989, the 10th Panchen Lama breathed his last under mysterious circumstances. He was 51.
In 1995, the Dalai Lama recognised a young boy Gendun Choekyi Nyima as the 11th Panchen Lama but Beijing soon abducted him and installed its own choice, Gyaltsen Norbu.