Amid protests by Beijing against his scheduled visit to Tawang, the Dalai Lama on Wednesday said India has never used him against China.
“India has never used me against China. I am a messenger of the ancient Indian thought and I talk about ahimsa, peace, harmony and secular ethics wherever I go,” the Tibetan spiritual leader said while talking to the media.
His remarks came after Chinese state media on Wednesday said India is using the Dalai Lama as a diplomatic leverage to challenge China’s “bottom line”.
“I am a Buddhist. The entire Himalayan range had been traditionally following Buddhist dharma and modern physics is based on Buddhist philosophy,” he said.
On corruption, the Dalai Lama said graft is a big problem facing the world and it was increasing because of lack of moral principles.
He spoke fondly of Arunachal Pradesh and said he had a special connection with the state as it served as his point of entry when he arrived in India in 1959.
“When I got freedom, when I first reached India, I entered through Arunachal Pradesh. I have an emotional connect with the state. It is a special place for me,” he
The Dalai Lama thanked the Indian government for letting him visit the frontier state.
“I would like to thank the government of India. I have been here since 1959. India has taken great care of me. I am their longest staying guest. I am thankful to them,” he added.
He gave a discourse at Buddha Park at Bomdila on Wednesday morning.
The spiritual leader had arrived on Tuesday evening from Guwahati accompanied by state Chief Minister Pema Khandu.
On Thursday, he would impart teachings at Dirang and confer the ‘Avalokiteshvara Permission’ at Thupsung Dhargyeling Monastery in the morning.
From April 8 to 10, the Dalai Lama will deliver discourses in Tawang. Owing to the rescheduled visit, he would not be able to go to Itanagar.
Image: Tibetan spiritual leader Dalai Lama with Chief Minister of Arunachal Pradesh, Pema Khandu at Thubchog Gatsel Ling Monastery Bomdila in West Kameng district of Arunachal Pradesh. Photograph: PTI Photo