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Ladakh has suffered years of neglect, says Buddhist monk Bhikkhu Sanghasena

The meditation guru was speaking at a function where some 20 faith leaders of different religions took a pledge to convince people on proper sanitation and hygiene practices

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Suru Valley, Ladakh. Image source: Wikimedia Commons

Leh, August 31, 2016: In Jammu And Kashmir, Ladakh region has suffered from years of neglect from the central government and ministers from Delhi come and make sweet promises only to forget, a top Buddhist monk has said.

Bhikkhu Sanghasena, founder and spiritual director of Mahabodhi International Meditation Centre, made the remarks here on Tuesday evening in the presence of Union Minister for Science and Technology Harsh Vardhan.

“I really want central ministers of India to do something for Ladakh. Every time events are held here, ministers come and speak sweet, sweet things and make promises. However they end up doing nothing for Ladakh,” Sanghasena said.

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Citing poor air traffic network for Ladakh, Sanghasena said the government should prioritise good and cheaper connectivity for the strategic region that shares a border with China and Pakistan.”People in Ladakh are not economically empowered.

Mostly the tickets from Delhi to Ladakh and from here to Delhi are so high that it becomes difficult for us to afford (to travel). We do not have train and proper transport services. The only means to connect to rest of the world is

“People in Ladakh are not economically empowered. Mostly the tickets from Delhi to Ladakh and from here to Delhi are so high that it becomes difficult for us to afford (to travel). We do not have train and proper transport services. The only means to connect to rest of the world is aerial route. But their charges are so high,” he said.

Flights to Ladakh– a major tourist destination in India — operate from Delhi and Srinagar. And tickets any time of the year may cost between Rs 8,000 and 20,000 or even more during peak tourist season of July to September.

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The meditation guru was speaking at a function where some 20 faith leaders of different religions took a pledge to convince people on proper sanitation and hygiene practices.
Sanghasena, one of religious leaders to take the oath, urged the union minister to convey his greetings to Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

The minister was in Ladakh to attend a two-day summit on government initiatives aimed at changing the mindset of people of Ladakh to adopt proper sanitation and hygiene.

The summit was organised by the Global Interfaith WASH Alliance (GIWA) in association with UNICEF India. WASH stands for Water, Sanitation and Hygeine campaign. (IANS)

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Tibetan Monk Sentenced for The Second Time by Chinese Authorities in Tibet

He was kept under incommunicado detention since then and neither his family members nor the monastery had much information

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Tibetan, Monk, Chinese
In July last year, Kirti Monastery’s monk Lobsang Dorje aged about 36 years was picked up by the Chinese police authorities from his monastic quarters in the middle of the night on suspicion of contacting with the outside world.

By Vijyender Sharma

 A Tibetan monk from Ngaba county’s Kirti Monastery who was arrested more than a year ago was sentenced to 3 years in prison by Chinese authorities  as per information received by Tibetan Government in exile at Dharmshala. Tibetan

In July last year, Kirti Monastery’s monk Lobsang Dorje aged about 36 years was picked up by the Chinese police authorities from his monastic quarters in the middle of the night on suspicion of contacting with the outside world. He was kept under incommunicado detention since then and neither his family members nor the monastery had much information about his whereabouts until the recent sentencing. According to Lobsang Yeshi and Kanyag Tsering, monks from branch of Kirti Monastery based in Dharamshala, Lobsang Dorje was born in the Ngaba County’s Chukle Gabma village and joined Kirti Monastery in Tibet at a very young age. His father’s name is Sangri.

This is the second sentencing of Lobsang Dorje. He was earlier arrested on 23 May 2008 for showing disrespect to the “patriotic re-education” which was being imposed on the Kirti monastery. He was sentenced to two years imprisonment then.

Tibetan, Monk, Chinese
A Tibetan monk from Ngaba county’s Kirti Monastery who was arrested more than a year ago was sentenced to 3 years in prison by Chinese authorities as per information received by Tibetan Government in exile at Dharmshala. Pixabay

The health conditions of Lobsang Dorje is yet unknown. It is a common practice of torturing Tibetan political prisoners especially while they are in incommunicado detention. Moreover, former political prisoners are especially in a vulnerable position as they are under continuous surveillance by the authorities and are picked up from their residence at odd hours on mere suspicions as was the case with Lobsang Dorje.

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Moreover, the charges for sentencing Lobsang Dorje are not yet known. China has frequently abused and misused the law, particularly Article 103 (2) of the Chinese Criminal law on “incitement to separatism” to suppress freedom of expression, religion, assembly and association and the cultural rights of the Tibetans. Recently Five UN Special Rapporteurs wrote to China asking about a group of Tibetans arrested for celebrating the Dalai Lama’s 80th birthday.