Fernandes to flag off parallel torch run by Tibetans

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New Delhi, Apr 17: As the Olympic Torch is taken from Vijay Chowk to India Gate amid stringent security arrangements later in the day, the Tibetans will launch a parallel peace run to protest the Chinese ''aggression'' in Tibet.

The torch, organised by the Tibetan Solidarity Committee, is likely to be flagged off by former Defence Minister George Fernandes. The flame, to be blessed with an inter-faith prayer, would be lit at Rajghat and carried across to the Samata Sthal. The relay would begin at 1100 hrs with a Yak dance and a Tibetan dance, performed by artistes from the Tibetan Institute of Performing Arts, Dharamsala, Himachal Pradesh.

The torch would go to Jantar Mantar via LNJP Road, Ram Lila Ground Chowk, Ranjit Singh flyover, Barakhamba Road/Tolstoy Marg crossing, Tolstoy Marg crossing, Kasturba Gandhi Marg and Janpath.

In a statement, the Tibetan Solidarity Committee said the torch was the symbol of the enduring nature of the Tibetans' non-violent struggle for fundamental freedoms and persistence to seek a lasting solution to the Tibet issue through negotiations.

''It also signifies our hopes and aspirations for freedom and justice for Tibet.'' Social activist Nafisa Ali would run the first leg of the peace relay along with a core group of 50 Indian and Tibetan runners.


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