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"On my part, I remain committed to the process of dialogue. It is my firm belief that dialogue and a willingness to look with honesty and clarity at the reality of Tibet can lead us to a viable solution."

Tibet's parliament-in-exile working for Tibetans across the world

October 6, 2007

Dharamshala, Oct 1 (ANI): The 14th Tibetan parliament-in-exile here is
working for welfare of Tibetans living in different parts of the world.

This parliament-in-exile was first started by Buddhist spiritual leader,
Dalai Lama on, September 2, 1960 with 13 members.

In 1991, the strength of members of the Parliament was increased to 46
and the process was made more democratic, as these members were now
elected by Tibetans living in exile across the world.

Out of the46, thirty members are elected on the basis of three provinces
in Tibet ten from each province of U -Tsang (central Tibet), Kham or
Dotoe (Eastern Tibet), and Amdo or Dhome (Northeastern Tibet).

Ten are religious representative two each from four schools of Tibetan
Buddhism (Nyima, Kagyud, Sakya and Gelug) and two from pre-Buddhist
religion of Bon.

Tibetans living in the West elect three members, two from Europe and one
from North America.

The Dalai Lama also used to nominate three members from fields of art,
science, literature and community services.

"A little amendment has been made in the provision of nominated members
- that his holiness can nominate any number of members or he may choose
not to nominate any member also said Karma Chophel, Speaker, Assembly of
Tibetan People Deputies.

The Tibetan Constitution and parliament-in-exile have its features
heavily borrowed from the Indian Constitution and parliament.

It is a one-house Parliament, which meets twice a year for about a
fortnight each. The tenure of this parliament is five years.

Though it functions like other legislatures, the plain, utilitarian
structure is a testament to its temporary, exile status.

The Tibetan people, both inside and outside Tibet, consider the
government-in-exile to be the sole legitimate government of Tibet.

An estimated 134,000 Tibetans live in exile, the majority of them in
India and Nepal.

The Buddhist spiritual leader the Dalai Lama set up his seat of power in
Dharamsala after he along with his followers fled to India in 1959, nine
years after China occupied Tibet.

The Dalai Lama has been campaigning for greater autonomy for Tibet.

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