Gorkhatimes

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Dalai Lama to visit Arunachal on Nov 8

Posted by Ramesh Khati on October 27, 2009

DELHI(ET): The Centre has cleared the week-long visit of the Dalai Lama to Arunachal Pradesh starting on November 8.

Arunachal Pradesh chief minister Dorjee Khandu said he will receive the Dalai Lama, who is scheduled to visit the Tawang monastery.

In a bid to dispel any lingering doubts about the visit, chairperson of the state-level reception committee T G Rinpoche said in Itanagar that the government has cleared the visit of the Dalai Lama on October 19 and that the MEA letter had reached the state the next day.

“It is a purely religious visit and during his four-day stay at the Tawang monastery, the Dalai Lama will give sermons to his followers,” Mr Rinpoche was quoted as saying. The Dalai Lama is also expected to inaugurate a super-specialty hospital at Tawang.

The announcement comes a day before the meeting between external affairs minister S M Krishna and his Chinese counterpart Yang Jiechi on the sidelines of the trilateral RIC meeting in Bangalore. The recent war of words between India and China over Arunachal Pradesh and the Chinese protest over the visit of the Dalai Lama to the state are likely to be discussed at the foreign minister level.

The bilateral meeting has acquired importance with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh saying after his meeting with Chinese premier Wen Jiabao in Thailand that the differences between India and China would be discussed at the foreign ministers’ meeting.

The differences encompass the border dispute and also include the recent allegations of Chinese intrusions into Indian territory. All these issues are expected to be discussed at the foreign ministers’ level. The Chinese foreign minister landed in Bangalore on Monday evening.

The Dalai Lama is scheduled to visit Japan on October 29 and then arrive in Guwahati on November 8 via Kolkata. He will leave for Tawang via a helicopter. He is expected to deliver his discourses from Yidga Choszin Tawang.

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