Govt urges no 'artificial controversy' over Dalai's visit as China fumes

Nayanima Basu New Delhi | Updated on January 15, 2018 Published on April 04, 2017

Minister of State for Home Kiren Rijiju. File Photo

Dalai Lama is scheduled to visit Arunachal Pradesh on today.

The government on Tuesday said no "artificial controversy" should be created around the visit of Buddhist spiritual leader Dalai Lama who is presently on a visit to Arunachal Pradesh.

"The government has clearly stated on several occasions that His Holiness Dalai Lama is a revered religious leader, who is deeply respected as such by the Indian people. No additional colour should be ascribed to his religious and spiritual activities and visits to various states of India. The government, therefore, urges that no artificial controversy should be created around his present visit to Arunachal Pradesh," the Ministry of External Affairs said in a statement.

Dalai Lama, who has been fighting for the cause of Tibet's freedom, has been visiting Arunachal Pradesh since 1983. This is his sixth visit since then. He had last visited Tawang in November 2009.

Dalai Lama's visit has irked the Chinese government. It has expressed its severe displeasure on the visit and objected to it.

China has said if Dalai Lama is allowed to visit Arunachal Pradesh then it will cause "severe damage" to Indo-China bilateral ties. China considers Arunachal Pradesh to be part of Tibet.

Meanwhile, the Minister of State for Home Affairs Kiren Rijiju has stated that the visit is for religious purposes and China has no say in it because Arunachal Pradesh is an integral part of India.

"There is no political angle behind His Holiness's visit to Arunachal Pradesh. It is completely religious. Arunachal Pradesh is an inseparable part of India and China should not object to his visit and interfere in India's internal affairs," he told reporters here on Tuesday.

The Tibetan Spiritual leader is scheduled to make a public appearance in Bomdila first and he will be staying there for two days. Thereafter, he will proceed to Tawang.

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Published on April 04, 2017
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