Dalai Lama rules out retirement

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{image-Dalai Lama_23112008.jpg www.oneindia.com}Dharamshala, Nov 23: Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama on Sunday said that he is not planning to retire, quashing speculation about the future of the 73-year-old leader.

Speculation had been growing that the Nobel Prize winner, who fled into exile in 1959 after an unsuccessful uprising in Tibet, will have to play a less forceful political role in future, especially if his health begins to fail. While addressing a news conference on Sunday, Nov 23 at Dharamsala, seat of Tibetan government in exile, in Himachal Pradesh, after a meeting of hundreds of Tibetans this week, Dalai Lama said, till his death he is committed to the Tibetan cause. "There is a change in periods but still this flesh is Tibetan flesh, him (pointing to Samdong Rinpoche, Tibetan Prime Minister-in-exile) also. So, till this body remains, the name of Tibetan is there. There is no point or question of retirement. Clear," he said.

Tibetans have been crusading for the independence of their homeland from the Chinese clutches, since it occupied Tibet in 1959.

Several attempts from Tibetans under the leadership of the Dalai Lama have failed to bring any results so far.

Beijing again firmly rejected that idea in talks this month with the Dalai Lama's envoys over the future of Tibet, which saw deadly riots and protests in March.

Terming the Tibetan struggle for independence as a moral issue, the spiritual leader said, "Those people who are showing concern and sympathy and are supporting, I do not consider you as pro-Tibetan, but rather pro-justice."

India, which is a second home to the Tibetan exiles, shares a diplomatic relationship with China and Tibetans have long been urging the Indian leadership to play a more pro-active role.

Referring to the policy adopted by India towards the whole Tibetan issue, the Dalai Lama, said, "In certain fields, Government of India is little bit cautious, too much cautious, that's my view. But, then after all the relation between Tibetan and Indian, that's something very unique."

Chinese troops occupied Tibet in 1950 and the Dalai Lama fled the mountainous region in 1959 after a failed uprising against Chinese rule.

The exiled government consulted thousands of Tibetans inside Tibet before the meeting.

The Dalai Lama said a crucial meeting of more than 100 international support groups to be held in Delhi later this month could provide a better picture of the way forward.

ANI

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