Kalon Tripa Dr Lobsang Sangay taking oath of office at his public inauguration in Dharamshala, the exile seat of Tibet on August 8, 2011. (Phayul file/Norbu Wangyal)
DHARAMSHALA, August 8: On the eve of completing his first year in office as the elected head of the Tibetan people, Kalon Tripa Dr Lobsang Sangay issued a letter reflecting on some of the progress the present Kashag has made under his leadership.
Elected into office soon after His Holiness the Dalai Lama devolved his entire political authority to the elected leadership, Dr Sangay in the letter noted that the responsibility has been handled “reasonably well so far, thanks to the unity, solidarity and support from Tibetans in and outside Tibet, and our friends.”
Dr Sangay said the 14th Kashag’s “energetic outreach effort” was able to “sustain attention on Tibet and enhance the profile of the Tibetan political leadership.”
“My colleagues in the Kashag have been traveling to various countries and my travels have taken me to seventeen different cities on four continents,” Kalon Tripa said. “I have met with senior government officials, prominent lawmakers, including the Speaker of the U.S. Congress, well-known media organizations, and other notable world citizens like Nobel Peace Laureates with whom I have highlighted the dire situation in Tibet and sought their support.”
In addition to the overseas travels, the Harvard law graduate noted that community connection was enhanced with a “robust domestic travel schedule to hear first-hand the issues and concerns of the people.”
“Towards this end, my colleagues in the Kashag and I visited most of the Tibetan settlements in India, including Jangthang area in Ladakh.”
Dr Sangay reiterated that under the 14th Kashag’s guiding principles of “unity, innovation and self-reliance,” several new initiatives were launched within the Central Tibetan Administration, including the Recruitment Training Program, Tibet Policy Institute, Tibet Corps, and the Tibetan Medicare System.
Calling education as one of the priority areas of the current Administration, Kalon Tripa said the present Kashag forwarded a detailed proposal to the Indian government for transferring the management of Central Schools for Tibetans and a US$2 million education grant from the U.S. Government was secured.
In his first year in office, Dr Sangay said that the Indian authorities “kindly agreed to extend the validity of the Registration Certificate for Tibetans born in India as well as those who have held RC for twenty years or more” to five years.
Reinforcing the Kashag’s commitment to the Middle-Way Approach and the stalled dialogue process with China, Kalon Tripa noted that the Tibetan Task Force on Negotiations had met on twice in the last eight months. He said the Task Force will meet again in December to “continue the dialogue process with the new Chinese leadership.”
Looking ahead, Dr Sangay said that the Kashag, under his leadership, plans to further upgrade the CTA’s capacity and revitalise the Tibetan settlements in India. He announced that following the 2nd Special General Meeting of Tibetans in Dharamshala, later this September, a Special International Tibet Support Groups Meeting will also be convened to discuss ways and means to deal with the urgent and critical situation in Tibet.
Dr Sangay had earlier called on Tibetans and supporters worldwide to organise a global solidarity vigil for Tibet on August 8, coinciding with the one-year anniversary of his inauguration.
Kalon Tripa Dr Sangay is scheduled to meet the press in the morning today and will be addressing the public following a prayer ceremony later in the afternoon.