Tibetans delighted with Dalai Lama's Tawang visit

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Dharamsala, Nov. 8 (ANI): Tibetans living in-exile in Dharamsala on Sunday expressed delight over the Dalai Lama's Arunachal Pradesh visit.

The Dalai Lama began his week-long visit to Tawang, Arunachal Pradesh on Sunday morning.

The Dalai Lama has defended the visit to Arunachal Pradesh as a mere lecture tour, but it has already drawn heavy criticism from Beijing, coming just two months after he visited self-ruled Taiwan, an island China also claims as its own.

Beijing has accused the Nobel peace prize laureate of hurting its ties with New Delhi with the visit to the disputed region.

"I think its good because his holiness is not only the leader of the Tibetan people but also one of the highest Buddhist spiritual leaders and the local people ion Arunachal for long time wanted him to come and bless them and teach them about Buddhist faith. At last it is happening and I think it's very positive as people are delighted and that's what is most important," said Kelsang Takla, Information Minister of the Tibetan government in-exile.

Meanwhile, hundreds of people have lined the road to Tawang-a moonscape of steep, craggy mountains and white stupas, which is home to the Monpa people who practice Tibetan Buddhism and speak a tongue similar to Tibetan.

"Seemingly it looks like a religious and traditional trip for his holiness. He is going there for fifth time but the significance of his trip comes out of a very silent statement that he would be going and coming back and he would end up saying that Arunachal Pradesh is a part of India," Tibetan activist Tenzin Tsondu said.

Tawang is the birthplace of the sixth Dalai Lama. (ANI)

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