Dharamshala (Himachal Pradesh), May 24: A small group of exiled Tibetans have been holding their own 'Olympics' in India, with the intention of mocking the holding of Olympics in Beijing, China in August this year. The four-day games being held near Dharamsala have been organised to highlight the Tibetan campaign for an independent homeland. Archery was the first event and each competitor was given three arrows to shoot in two minutes. The archers, cheered by a small crowd, went around collecting their arrows after each round because they were in short supply.
Most of the participants see the sporting event as an ideal form of protest against the Chinese. The winner of the women's archery competition, Tenzin Dadon, said she hoped Tibet would soon be "free". "Tibetan Olympics' is a big challenge for a free Tibet and also for the next generations. I wish Tibet will be free soon," she said.
Dharamsala has been the epicentre of worldwide protests that have dogged the Beijing Olympic torch relay across the globe. The Tibetans involved in the games said their version of the Olympics is aimed at allowing them to participate in the real Olympics as representatives of their own nation.
However the games, like the annual 'Miss Tibet' competition, has not caught the imagination of most exiled Tibetans.