By Choekyi Lhamo
DHARAMSHALA, Sept. 25: The former member of the 12th and 13th Tibetan Parliament-in-exile Lobsang Shastri was appointed the Representative of His Holiness the Dalai Lama at the Bureau office in New Delhi. As the key Tibetan official in the Indian capital, he will assume the responsibility of representing the Tibetan government-in-exile as the nodal officer to liaise relations with Indian authorities and assist with documentation for travel related paperwork for exile Tibetans, among other duties.
As per the circular issued by the Cabinet [Kashag] on Thursday, Lobsang Shastri is set to succeed Kasur Ngodup Dongchung who served as the representative in New Delhi since August 2016. As per Article 19 (1) of the Public Service Commission’s rules and regulations, the Representative at the Offices of Tibet must be appointed by the Kashag in the presence of Sikyong (President) and the Kalons (ministers).
The current office holder has a shastri degree, which is equivalent to a BA degree, from the Central Institute of Higher Tibetan Studies Sarnath in Varanasi and later worked as a translator at the Library of Tibetan Works and Archive in 1985. Lobsang was also the chief librarian of the Tibetan manuscript department from 1998 to 2009, as well as LTWA’s Editor-in-Chief of the Tibet Journal.
Representative Lobsang was elected as a member to the 12th and 13th parliament from the U-Tsang constituency and served the community as a legislator till 2005. Apart from his official duties, he has worked as a Tibetan language instructor at the Department of History of Religion at Oslo University in Norway in 1994 and as a lecturer and visiting scholar at the Department of Central of Eurasian Studies at Indiana University in 2006. He was also elected as a member on the advisory board of the renowned International Association of Tibetan Studies (IATS) conference in 2003.