Dharamshala, India — Hundreds of Tibetans and Tibet supporters gathered at the main Tibetan temple on the morning of December 10 to comemorate the 70th International Human Rights Day and to celebrate the 28th annual Nobel Peace Prize Day, a day dedicated to celebrating the presentation of the Nobel Peace Prize to His Holiness the Dalai Lama by the Nobel Committee in 1989.
The chief guest in attendance was Shri Ram Swaroom Sharma, a member of parliament from the governing party of India.
The celebration was attended by Officiating President Kalon Sonam Topgyal Khorlatsang, Deptuy Speaker Acharya Yeshi Phunstok, Chief Justice Commissioner Kargyu Dhondup, as well as members of the Kashag, Tibetan Parliament-in-Exile, Tibetan Supreme Justice Commission, and officials from the Central Tibetan Administration. Representatives of Tibetan non-governmental organizations and members of the local Tibetan public also attended the ceremony.
Shri Ram Swaroom Sharma dedicated his speech to expressing his gratitude to His Holiness the Dalai Lama for making Dharamshala such a cherished place to individuals across the world through spreading messages of love and peace.
He spoke of His Holiness the Dalai Lama with the most sincere admiration, describing him as a model of grace and humility for all. He then called on the Indian government to bestow its highest honor, the ‘Bharat Ratna,’ on His Holiness the Dalai Lama. “As members of the All Party Indian Parliamentary Forum for Tibet led by Shri Shanta Kumar, former Chief Minister of Himachal Pradesh, we call on the Indian government to confer the Bharat Ratna on His Holiness the Dalai Lama. We are also making efforts to invite His Holiness the Dalai Lama to address a joint session of the Indian parliament.”
Sharma also expressed India’s profound support of the Tibetan movement for freedom and vocalized his hope that the day Tibet’s issue will be resolved is near.
Special Guest Mr. Andra Papus Ngombet Malewa, President of Sassoufit, a Congolese Human Rights Group, echoed this sentiment and urged Tibetans to continue the fight for freedom. “We are not afraid. We are not afraid. Democracy is for all human beings.”
Other speakers throughout the morning included the Deputy Speaker of the Tibetan Parliament-in-Exile Acharya Yeshi Phuntsok, Central Tibetan Administration President Dr Lobsang Sangay, Justice Commissioner Dr Ngawang Rabgyal, and President of the Indo-Tibetan Friendship Association Ajay Singh.
Traditional dance and opera was performed throughout the morning by members of the Lower Tibetan Children’s Village (TCV) School, Upper TCV School, TCV Gopalpur, Yangling School, and the Tibetan Institute of Performing Arts.