Tibetan Prime Minister raising Indian tri-colour at the Kashag secretariat, Dharamsala
DHARAMSHALA, August 15: Tibetans in exile led by Prime Minister Lobsang Sangay today observed the 67th Indian Independence Day.
At a brief ceremony held at the Kashag Secretariat, Sangay unfurled the Indian national tri-colour as the Indian national anthem was being sung.
Senior officials of the Central Tibetan Administration were present at the ceremony.
Speaking to reporters, the Tibetan Prime Minister conveyed his gratitude to the government and people of India.
“On 15th August, once again we would like to convey our heartfelt gratitude to the government of India, the great nation of India and people of India for hosting Tibetans and our spiritual and most revered leader His Holiness the Dalai Lama for all the kindness extended to Tibetan people is very much appreciated.”
Calling India a “shining example” for the rest of the world he said, “It is not only the largest democracy but also representative of unity in diversity in true sense of the word, which Tibetans emulate and take it as a very good role model.”
Responding to a question on the possibility of Tibetan Independence Day someday Sangay said, “One should always remain hopeful, we all are human beings and hope keeps us more optimistic and positive in personal life and as a movement is always based on hope because if you look at the history, history has often been towards justice and a day for Tibet and Tibetan people will come."
Following the ceremony, the prime minister attended the official Independence Day celebrations at the Police Ground in lower Dharamshala and will leave for the US later today.
The celebration of India's Independence Day also took place in McLeod Ganj where the four major Tibetan NGOs in Dharamshala namely the regional chapters of Tibetan Youth Congress and Tibetan Women’s Association, Students for a Free Tibet-India and Tibetan Centre for Conflict Resolution distributed ladoos and sang India's national anthem.
“It's heart-warming to see the Tibetans celebrate Indian Independence. For most Indians, it's a national holiday but for the Tibetans it's a hope of their Freedom. We've shared a great history in the past and will soon share a great future too. The Indian Tricolour and the Flag of the Snow Lion will fly high together,” said Rashi Jauhri, the Deputy Program Director of Students for a Free Tibet-India.
Rahul Singh Rana, an Indian said, “I feel very good that all Tibetans and Indians are together and celebrating the Independence Day is really good to see. We should always be together for the freedom of Tibet. India and Tibet are all brothers and sisters. Free Tibet.”