China can learn preserving languages from India: Dalai Lama


Dharamsala : China can take a leaf out of the Indian book on preserving and promoting linguistic diversity, Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama has said.

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“China may want to learn from the Indian experience where preservation and promotion of the linguistic diversity is being done without it being seen as a danger of separation,” he said in Canada Saturday, according to a post on the website of the Central Tibetan Administration Sunday.

On being called a son of India, the Dalai Lama said it was a reality as he was based in India, the source of Tibetan spiritual heritage.

“If my brain is looked at, it can be seen that the content is all knowledge propagated by the Indian Nalanda masters,” he said, adding that his body survived 51 years due to “Indian dal and chapattis”.

Does India have a role in the Tibetan dialogue process with China?

“India’s moral support is always there. It is our preference to have direct talks with the Chinese.”

Recalling his meetings with Chinese leaders during his visit to Beijing in 1954-55, the Dalai Lama said he was impressed with their idealism — like that of the Indian freedom fighters.

“I even wanted to join the Chinese Communist Party. Today, it is becoming corrupted and on account of their weakness, the authorities have to indulge in censorship,” he said.

“China is historically a Buddhist country and the preservation of the Tibetan Buddhist culture is also in the interest of the millions of Chinese who are looking for spiritual sustenance,” he said.

The Dalai Lama, 75, has been following a “middle-path” policy that seeks greater autonomy for Tibetans rather than complete independence.

However, the Chinese view him as a hostile person bent on splitting Tibet from China. Beijing frowns upon meetings between him and foreign leaders.

The Dalai Lama and his supporters fled Tibet and took refuge in India when Chinese troops moved in and took control of Lhasa in 1959.

He has since headed the Tibetan government-in-exile from here.