Successor could be a young
boy or girl: Dalai Lama
By Jaideep Sarin
Nov 23 (IANS) Tibetan spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, Sunday
kept everyone guessing about his successor, saying the issue
was open on whether a new head was required, and added that
it could be a young boy or a girl.
are various ways of doing it (having a successor). The point
is whether to continue with the institution of the Dalai Lama
or not. After my death, Tibetan religious leaders can debate
whether to have a Dalai Lama or not," the Tibetan leader,
who has been living in exile in India for the last 49 years,
told media persons at his Mcleodganj-based headquarters here
successor can be a young boy or a girl. Girls show more compassion.
Also, women are dominating things all over the world,"
may be the last Dalai Lama," he also added.
Tibetan leader felt sad that the Tibet issue was not being
resolved. "Tibet is going through a death sentence. Its
spirit is being killed," he said.
India's help in the resolution of the Tibet issue, the Dalai
Lama said that India was "over-cautious" in the
matter as it had its own compulsions with China.
73-year-old Dalai Lama, whose real name is Tenzin Gyatso,
is the 14th in succession in the institution of the Dalai
Lamas. The first Dalai Lama was made in the 15th century.
has been under pressure from the exiled Tibetan community
to choose a successor since he is getting older and has been
hospitalized in recent months for various ailments. He was
recently operated in a Delhi hospital for removal of gall
Tibetan leadership here is worried that if the Dalai Lama
dies without nominating or selecting a successor, the Chinese
government might install its own choice as the next Dalai
Lama as they did in the case of the Panchen Lama, the second
highest ranking Buddhist leader in Tibetan hierarchy, in 1995.
Dalai Lama told reporters that there would be no dearth of
leaders to take over the reins of the Tibetan community after
his death. He said that Karmapa Lama, the third highest lama
after the Dalai Lama and the Panchen Lama, and other religious
leaders could lead the Tibetans. He added that the political
role was already been looked after by Tibetan "Prime
Minister" Samdhong Rinpoche.
putting all speculation about his retirement plans at rest,
the Dalai Lama said he stood committed to the Tibetan cause
and would continue to lead the Tibetans "till death"
as it was his moral responsibility.
all Tibetans return to Tibet after the issue is settled, I
will hand over authority to others," he said.
Dalai Lama has been living in India in exile since 1959 when
Chinese forces entered Tibet's capital Lhasa and crushed an
uprising by Tibetans.
said that he chose to remain "silent" on the issue
of seeking complete independence for Tibet instead of following
his middle-path policy of seeking genuine autonomy.
special meeting of the Tibetan leadership, called here Nov
17 to 22 by the Tibetan Parliament in exile at the instance
of the Dalai Lama, Saturday reaffirmed faith in the leadership
of the Dalai Lama and his "middle-path" policy to
work for genuine autonomy for Tibet under China.
meeting categorically requested the Dalai Lama not to even
think of retirement or semi-retirement.
Dalai Lama, in recent months, had been saying that he was
in semi-retirement and wanted to retire from his public commitments.
meeting asked the exiled government to hold back future talks
with China till Beijing "responded positively" to
the Tibetan demands of negotiating a genuine autonomy for
Tibet, allowing exiled Tibetans to return and also protect
Tibetan race, religion, language and culture.