The Tibetans who are Indians

By the Editor: Siddharth Sehgal

Most of us are familiar with two sorts of Tibetans one is Tenzin Gyatso, the fourteenth Dalai Lama and others are those from whom we purchase our sweaters and jackets from in Tibetan markets that opens up during winters in cities across India. The facts are however much deeper than that, Tibetans living in India have their own government in exile, they go to schools, colleges and work in different private and public spheres across the country.

Unlike, Nepalese, Bhutanese and Bangladeshis immigrants who have a sovereign country of their own, Tibetan homeland is under Chinese occupation. My point here is not to give you a history lesson but convey a sense of understanding towards a people who have stood with us shoulder to shoulder in our thick and thin. I do not see them as refugees in both social and official context but as a contributing part of our society and the first step in this direction would be, in my opinion, to give citizenship to those Tibetans who desire it. Their vibrant culture has only added to the beauty and diversity of ours. It’s right not only correct from a moral viewpoint but also it conforms to our core values. Tibetan struggle for independence just like ours is a non-violent movement; this makes them much closer to us in the plight and injustice we suffered at the hands of the British. They may be Tibetans but I see them as fellow Indians, fellow human beings.

 Secondly, our close cooperation with Tibetan people should send Beijing a message that when it comes to foreign policy they cannot get away with everything. It’s not about China’s blockade to India’s NSG bid or their approval of Pakistan’s subversive and terrorist activities on Indian soil but a firm stance against aggression that spans from ridges over line of control to the UN Security Council. Recently, if my memory is correct Indian government canceled the visa of a Uighur dissident because China considered him a terrorist, now they veto our efforts when we try to get a resolution moving against actual terrorist groups who are responsible for deaths of thousands of innocent Indians, how is that fair? We should stand firm in our resolution against such hypocrisy. Tibetans are not guests in our land they are part of Indian family.

One Comment

  1. i still remember those days siddharthji when Bangla desh was not created, it was East Pakistan and thousands of refugees flooded into different parts of India. I remember distinctly how people were asked to contribute generously for their upkeep and the govt. had introduced and launched a 5np stamp in their support, which was gradually raised later on to 25np. India welcomes infiltration to the extent that taxpayers are pushed through their noses to drain out their pockets to maintain their safety and needs, so whether it is a question of supporting Tibetans or anyone else, India continues to believe in Athithi Devo Bhava, despite the fact that it is facing the greatest threat of population explosion

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