New Delhi: Acknowledging that its a ‘very sensitive time’ for bilateral relations with China, the Government of India has sent out a note to ‘senior leaders’ and ‘government functionaries’ to stay away from events which hosts the exiled Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama.
According to a report in the Indian Express, the note was sent by Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale to Cabinet Secretary P K Sinha.
China calls the Dalai Lama, the spiritual leader of the Tibetans, a “splittist” and a “dangerous separatist”.
After receiving the note, Sinha directed that it’s not ‘desirable’ for leaders and government functionaries to attend the events of the Tibetan leadership in exile in India.
The report added, “In his note to secretaries and heads of government departments, Sinha said participation in these events “should be discouraged” and “accordingly, you are requested to ensure appropriate action in the matter”. He quoted Gokhale’s note to underline “the sensitive nature of the subject.”
In his note, the Foreign Secretary stated: “We understand that this includes a large public event titled ‘Thank You India’ being organised at Thyagaraj Sports Complex in New Delhi on 1 April, 2018. The Dalai Lama set-up also intends to invite a number of Indian dignitaries. These are likely to be followed up by additional events in Delhi as well as other States of India.”
“The proposed period will be a very sensitive time in the context of India’s relations with China. Participation by senior leaders or government functionaries, either from the Central Government or State Governments, is not desirable, and should be discouraged,” Gokhale wrote to the Cabinet Secretary.