By Tenzin Dharpo
Tibetan PM Lobsang Sangay speaks during the commemorative function at Tsuglakhang temple, Dharaamshala. March 10, 2017. Phayul Photo-Kunsang Gashon
DHARAMSHALA, MAR. 10: A Facebook post by a Tibetan writer and former Director of the Gu-Chu-Sum former Tibetan political prisoners’ organization that had been widely discussed in the Tibetan community has been condemned by the highest order of the exile Tibetan government, officially known as the Central Tibetan administration.
Tibetan PM or Sikyong Lobsang Sangay made a strongly worded remark on the post by Lukar Jam Atsok, calling it “unfortunate” in his address during the commemorative function of the 10th March ‘Tibetan Uprising Day’ at Tsuglakhang temple courtyard yesterday.
Sangay said the remarks made are “objectionable and unfortunate. Such statements sow discord in the Tibetan community and gives reasons for adversaries to rejoice.”
“Although such statements are made on the premise of right to speech, it is unacceptable that such remarks be made to our leader who has since the age of 16 been entrusted with the Tibet’s well being,” Sangay further said.
Earlier last month, Jam posted a eulogy for the late Tibetologist Prof. Elliot Sperling in his Facebook page. The English translation of the original Tibetan language post which was also posted on the same page stated, “Not out of loyalty, but speaking of your ethical courageous position, you (Elliot Sperling) are the one who should have lived for 113 years”. Although the post had not made any direct reference to the Tibetan leader, the former political prisoner’s post has since been condemned by several Tibetans and attracted comments from many Tibetans, many critical of his view.
Many say that the mention of 113 years made in the post, an apparent reference to the age predicted by a prominent reincarnate Tibetan lama few years ago which said that the Tibetan leader the Dalai Lama would live until the age of 113, amounts to hurting the religious sentiments of the Tibetan people. The octogenarian leader and Nobel Laureate himself had on a few occasions also made references to it in his speeches, bringing much delight to the Tibetan populace both in Tibet and those in exile.
Speaking to Phayul, Lukar Jam said, “An issue that is fuelled by the random and unwarranted opinions of netizens is not something a political head of the exile government should speak on using official platform. I have sufficiently provided explanation within the post if people are interested in it. The position of the Sikyong on the issue shows the manner in which he holds office.”
Responding on the criticism he had gotten for his views, he said, “That is the situation of the community we live in”.
Lukar Jam Atsok is a former Tibetan political prisoner who also served at the helm of the non-governmental organization Gu-Chu-Sum, a political as well as a welfare organization for former political prisoners, based in Dharamshala. Earlier in 2016, he stood in the Tibetan general elections for the Prime Ministerial post of Central Tibetan Administration and was the sole candidate that stood for complete independence of Tibet as his core stand for the resolution of the Tibetan issue.