By Tenzin Dharpo
The Dalai Lama stops briefly at Hamirpur circuit house during his journey to Manali on August 9, 2019. Photo- Jeremy Russell_OHHDL
DHARAMSHALA, Aug. 9: The Tibetan leader His Holiness the Dalai Lama on Friday left for Manali, a hill town over 200 km away to take rest from his schedules here in Dharamshala where the 84-year old resides.
The octogenarian Tibetan leader left Dharamshala by road with security escorts this morning around 8:30, stopping briefly at Hamirpur circuit house where he met former Chief Minister of Himachal Pradesh Prof. Prem Kumar Dhumal. He will spend the night at Mandi and continue his journey to Manali tomorrow, sources said.
Exile Tibetan government run Tibet.net said that the 84-year-old decided to visit Manali, this time as he was not able to visit Manali last year due to excessive rain and flooding in the area and that His Holiness will be staying at Von Ngari Monastery in Manali.
While there are no official schedules planned for the visit, sources say that public engagements and short teachings may be part of the foremost Buddhist leader’s stay that is said to be until the end of the month.
The proposed Tenshug (Long Life offering prayer) by five groups scheduled on 22 August has been postponed to 13 September, the private office announced following the departure of the Dalai Lama to Manali.
The harsh Dharamshala monsoon which averages around 3,000 mm (120 inches) rainfall makes it one of the wettest places in the state. The Dalai Lama for the past few years had visited Ladakh where the climate is mush drier but due to overwhelming requests for blessings and invitations, the aging Tibetan leader has publicly said that his age cannot keep up to such demands from the public.