Second Day report of 10th Session of the 16th Tibetan Parliament-in-Exile

 

Finance Kalon providing clarification to the questions raised in the Parliament today

Dharamsala: Chaired by Speaker Mr. Pema Jungney, the second day of the 10th session of the 16th Tibetan Parliament-in-Exile began at 9:30 AM with the continuation of the debate on the Official Solidarity motion on the critical situations inside Tibet from the previous day.

A total of 17 Parliamentarians participated in the discussion on the solidarity motion. While paying tribute to the sacrifices made by the patriotic Tibetans inside Tibet, the discussion emphasized the importance of unity and on protecting Tibetan language, religion, and culture which are the true aspirations of those brave Tibetans and will the true solidarity resolution to them.

The discussion further mentioned the importance of the productive approach in resuming dialogue between the envoy of His Holiness the Dalai Lama and Chinese counterpart and suggested intensifying the current outreach on the ‘Middle Way Approach. Tibetans in Tibet are facing discrimination in the field of job opportunities, travel, education, etc., therefore, Tibetans in exile being the representative of the Tibetans living in Tibet have to use all the available platforms to campaign Tibet’s issue. Likewise, they raised other important matters like human rights violations, censorship of information, destruction of culture, and so forth. Parliamentarians during the discussion also appreciated Tibetans in India and other countries, who are organizing solo walks, rallies, and campaigns within individuals’ capacities for creating awareness on Tibet’s issue and suggested providing assistance to them.

The session continued with debate on the statement of Finance Kalon and précis 2021-2022 budget report by the Budget Estimate Committee and clarifications provided against the doubts and questions. A total of 11 Parliamentarians have provided opinions & suggestions and raised doubts or questions, many of them appreciated the hard work of the Finance Department’s Kalon and its officials in proposing the budget and also appreciated the Budget Estimate Committee for the reviewed report. While some of the members raised questions with regard to the loans (both commercial and non-commercial) provided by the Department of Finance, queries on green book & Tibetan voluntary contribution, budget allotment on COVID-19 related project and on social media.

While many of them shared their concerns regarding the unresponsiveness of the Tibetans living in the west on paying Tibetan voluntary contribution and urged each and every Tibetan to contribute. Some parliamentarians also shared concerns about the immigration of young Tibetans to the west. Suggestions were made to provide assistance to Tibetan sweeter sellers, providing educational materials to the Tibetan students in remote Tibetan settlements with schools being closed and internet unavailable during the pandemic, and there was also a suggestion on increasing Buddhist education scholarships to the monks and nuns.

Likewise, Parliamentarians also expressed gratitude to His Holiness the Dalai Lama for blessing much-needed guidance during the pandemic and expressed gratitude to the state oracle for its divine predictions.

Finance Kalon Karma Yeshi in his clarification, informed the increase of CTA corpus fund in the past 10 years and clarified other queries raised on corpus fund. Likewise, he provided clarifications on loans provided by the Department of Finance. Answering questions of Parliamentarians on the green book, the Kalon informed everyone of the pilot project of digitalizing green book registration and voluntary contribution aiming to benefit Tibetans living in the West.

Parliamentarian Khenpo Sonam Tenphel, the Chairman of the Budget Estimate Committee clarified questions raised on the corpus fund & project fund of the Department of Education, funds allotted for the COVID-19 vaccination (Department of Health), on CTA corpus fund, and others.

The debate paved the way for the fourth list of business for the day with debate and approval on the budget of the various departments and offices under the Central Tibetan Administration for the year 2021-2022, starting from the Tibetan Parliamentary Secretariat, Supreme Justice Commission, North East Local Tibetan Justice Commission, Southern Tibetan Justice Commission, Ladakh Tibetan Local Justice Commission, Mobile Tibetan justice commission, 37 Local Tibetan Assemblies, Department of Security, 62 Tibetan Freedom Movements, and Tibetan Election Commission. Debate and approval on the budget of the Kashag Secretariat will continue in tomorrow’s session.

The session adjourned from 5 pm until 9:30 am of the next morning.

Khenpo Sonam Tenphel, Chairman of Budget Estimate Committee providing clarification to the questions raised in the Parliament today

Gewatsang Ngawang Tharpa, Member of Budget Estimate Committee providing clarification to the questions raised in the Parliament today

Finance Kalon providing clarification to the questions raised in the Parliament today