By Phuntsok Yangchen
Local Indian community members with the Speaker and Deputy Speaker of the Tibetan Parliament, March 15, 2014. Photo: Kunsang Gashon
DHARAMSHALA, March 15: Tibetan Parliament in Exile honoured over forty local Indian Tibet supporters representing various Tibet support groups including local Taxi and Auto union today as the observers for the ongoing Tibetan Parliament session.
Tibetan Prime Minister Lobsang Sangay also met with the Indian supporters. Speaker Penpa Tsering of Tibetan Parliament in Exile expressed his happiness to receive the local Indian Tibet supporters saying “this will add to our better relations.”
“The Indian government has given us lots of assistance, and I on behalf of the Tibetan people and the Tibetan parliament in exile extend gratitude to the government and people of India for their hospitality,” said the Speaker. He also thanked the Himachal Pradesh government for all the help for the Tibetans living in Himachal Pradesh particularly for being the host to His Holiness the Dalai Lama who has lived here for the last 54 years.
The Indian supporters were honoured with Tibetan ceremonial scarves (khatak) and souvenirs. Thubten Pema Lama, Public Relations Officer of the Indo Tibetan Friendship Association commended the Tibetan Parliament for honouring Indian Tibet supporters and said it was long overdue. “It’s been 17 years since the inception of Indo Tibetan Friendship Association and I appreciate the Tibetan parliament for this gesture.”
The highest legislative organ of the Tibetan government in exile meets twice a year to enact laws, frame rules and regulations and issue policy decisions and monitor the finances activities of the Tibetan government in exile, which officially is known as the Central Tibetan Administration.
“I am very proud to receive such honour,” said Pintu, Indo Tibetan Friendship Association. “It is good to live in a harmony with the local people. If there is a better relation with the local people, they will have respect for each others’ community.”