Delhi, 12th December 2023: In alignment with the ongoing winter session of the Indian Parliament, a delegation from the standing committee of the Tibetan Parliament-in-Exile, led by Deputy Speaker Dolma Tsering Teykhang and comprising MPs Tenpa Yarphel and Tsaneytsang Dhondup Tashi, commenced their advocacy initiatives in Delhi.
They interacted with notable dignitaries, including Chairperson Shri Iqbal Singh Lalpura, Vice Chairman Shri Kersi Kaikhushroo Deboo, and members Shri Dhanyakumar Jinappa Dunde and Smt. Rinchen Lhamo of the National Commission for Minorities within the Government of India. Additionally, they engaged with Shri (Dr.) Lankappa Hanumanthaiah, Member of Rajya Sabha (MP), Shri Ajay Dutt, Members of the Delhi Legislative Assembly (MLA), and other key stakeholders. In the course of their meetings, Ms. Tashi Dekyi from the India Tibet Coordination Office and Ms. Tenzin Choeying from the Tibetan Parliamentary Secretariat accompanied the Tibetan parliamentary delegation.
The day commenced with a meeting at the office of the Konrad Adenauer Foundation of New Delhi, where the Tibetan lawmakers, led by the delegation, engaged with Dr. Adrain Haack, the Director, and Mr. Ashish, the Program Manager. Discussions centered around potential future collaborations, during which the Tibetan lawmakers apprised them of the purpose of their visit to Delhi and shed light on the current distressing situation in Tibet.
Following this, the delegation proceeded to the National Police Memorial, where they received a guided tour of the memorial and museum from its director. They were briefed on the significance of its central sculpture, the wall of valour, and other noteworthy aspects.
Subsequently, a meeting was held with Chairperson Shri Iqbal Singh Lalpura, Vice Chairman Shri Kersi Kaikhushroo Deboo, and members Shri Dhanyakumar Jinappa Dunde and Smt. Rinchen Lhamo of the National Commission for Minorities, the Government of India.
The day continued with additional meetings involving Shri (Dr.) Lankappa Hanumanthaiah, Member of Rajya Sabha (MP), and Shri Ajay Dutt, Members of the Delhi Legislative Assembly (MLA). In between these engagements, the delegation also visited the National War Memorial to pay homage to the sacrifices made by martyrs.
During their meetings with the aforementioned key dignitaries, the delegation advocated for the recognition of Tibet as an occupied nation with its independent and sovereign past, supported by historical evidence. They urged refraining from endorsing China’s false narrative that labels Tibetans as a minority, portrays Tibet’s occupation as an internal issue of Beijing, and asserts Tibet as a part of China. Such endorsements, they argued, contribute to China’s colonization of Tibet, subjugating Tibetans and denying them the space to negotiate for more meaningful freedom.
Furthermore, they urged the dignitaries to request the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCC) to conduct scientific research studies on PRC government policies exploiting Tibet’s natural resources, highlighting their negative impact on global climate change. The delegation pressed for China to allow access to independent human rights organizations, inviting UN Special Rapporteurs to investigate freedoms of opinion and expression, peaceful assembly and association, and human rights defenders in Tibet.
The delegation also called for the unconditional release of all Tibetan political prisoners, including Gedhun Choekyi Nyima, the 11th Panchen Lama, whose whereabouts and well-being have been unknown since May 17, 1995. They emphasized placing the human rights situation in Tibet within the context of the international and unresolved nature of the Tibet-China conflict. Additionally, they urged the dignitaries to join global leaders in expressing concern over human rights violations and religious repression in Tibet, advocating for the adoption of a Magnitsky Act to sanction Chinese officials.
The delegation also encouraged expanding and deepening official and diplomatic engagements with the Central Tibetan Administration, the legitimate representative of the Tibetan people and the continuation of the former government of independent Tibet in Lhasa. They urged legislators to express their concern and raise their voices on human rights violations in Tibet at all available platforms.