Dalai to brief Tibetan parliament today

Harvard fellow Lobsang Sangay is frontrunner for PMs post

 The 75-year-old spiritual leader, who has been leading the struggle for a “meaningful and genuine” autonomy to Tibet from China for the past six decades, will send a message reflecting his decision to the 14th Parliament-in-Exile which will have its last session on Monday. “His Holiness the Dalai Lama will send a message to the Parliament-in-Exile on Monday morning asking it to accept his decision to step down as political head. The message will be read out by Speaker Penpa Tsering,” officials of the government-in-exile said here on Sunday.

The Lama on Thursday announced his decision to retire as political head of Tibetan government-in-exile and to hand over his “formal authority” to a “freely elected” leader. However, the parliament-in-exile is unlikely to accept his decision as lawmakers and other officials feel that without the Lama the government-in-exile would lack legitimacy.

Prime Minister of Tibetan government-in-exile Samdhong Rinpoche says parliament has to look for “innovative” solutions to satisfy the aspirations of theTibetans. Lama’s decision comes at a time when exiled Tibetans across the world will vote the next prime minister which may see for the first time that a lay person, rather than a monk, will assume the role. The 42-year-old Lobsang Sangay, a Harvard fellow, is the leading candidate for the prime minister’s post. Rinpoche said though the leadership of the Lama could not be “substituted” by anyone, Tibetans had to find out a way to take the political leadership of the movement without his involvement.

Observers feel that the Dalai Lama’s decision on the 52nd anniversary of  Tibetan National Uprising Day reflects his desire to hand over the political role to the younger generation. But, they feel that he will remain the spiritual leader of the community.

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