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Tibetans seek support for autonomy call

A Tibetan parliamentary delegation met political leaders of Jharkhand on Friday seeking support for the region’s cry for autonomy and protests against the Chinese government.

Pema Jungney, former speaker and current member of Tibetan parliament-in-exile, told mediapersons this afternoon the situation in Tibet was grave due to gross violation of human rights and brutal crackdown by Chinese authorities on any form of peaceful expression of freedom.

He is leading a four-member Tibetan parliamentary delegation that is visiting Jharkhand as part of its all-India lobby campaign to garner support for their cause.

The team that has three other parliamentarians — Serta Tsultrim, Yangchen Dolkar and Dhardon Sharling — met governor Syed Ahmed and other leaders, apprising them of the crisis in Tibet.

The delegation met former chief minister Arjun Munda, former deputy chief minister Hemant Soren and Speaker C.P. Singh, state Congress chief Pradeep Balmuchu and BJP state president Dineshanand Goswami.

“Every leader we met so far gave us a patient hearing and supported our cause, irrespective of their political affiliation,” Jungney said, adding they expected the Indian government to come forward with more open support that would help mobilise global opinion in favour of the Tibetan cause.

The delegation, which has already visited Bengal, Odisha and Chhattisgarh, will tour the Northeast next to canvass support from Indians.

“We have been demanding autonomy for Tibet, where our people cannot even practise religious rituals or uphold cultural norms and children cannot study in their own language,” Jungney said.

Dolkar said state oppression had led to such a grave situation that 99 persons, monks and nuns included, had immolated themselves since February 2009 with 83 deaths.