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Panchen Lama makes his 'political debut' in Tibet: Report

June 17, 2010

Press Trust of India
Jun 16, 2010

Beijing -- Twenty-year-old Panc-hen Lama, being
projected by China as the Dalai Lama’s successor,
has made his "political debut" by making a maiden
address at a prominent monastery in Tibet, the state media said on Tuesday.

The 11th Panchen Lama, Bainqen Erdini Qoigyijabu,
addressed for the first time a congregation at
Tashilhunpo Monastery in Tibet, the designated
home of successive Panchen Lamas since 14th
century. Qoigyijabu was appointed by China as the
11th Panchen Lama repudiating the designation of
six-year-old Gedhun Choekyi Nyima for the same
post by Dalai Lama in 1995, took his seat at the
Tashilhunpo Monastery in Shigatse on Monday. He
took his seat nearly 15 years after his
appointment and addressed a gathering of monks.

Chinese state television CCTV projected it as a
"political debut" by the young monk to take over
mantle of high seat of Tibetan Buddhism without
referring to Dalai Lama, who is on exile in
India. China considers Dalai Lama as a
separatist, colluding with anti-China forces to
separate Tiber from the country.

"The monastery is the home base of Panchen Lama.
Though he doesn’t live there most of the time,
the close connection makes it appropriate for him
to preach there," the CCTV report said. The Lama lives mostly in Beijing.

"With the strong support of the (Chinese)
government and believers he is expected to play a
bigger role for modern China," a TV reporter covering the event said.

The young monk’s address at Tashilhunpo Monastery
built in 1447 by the First Dalai Lama for Panchen
Lama, regarded as the second in command of the
Tibetan Buddhist remained home for successive Panchen Lamas.

The successive Dali Lamas lived Potala Palace in
Lhasa. "It is a precious movement. Accompanied by
monks walked into the lobby (of the monastery) he
elaborated on the essence three principle aspects
of the path, the classic by Kampa the founder of
the Galax school," the TV report said.

His address at the monastery was being projected
as a major event as it marks the "formal" take
over to the top seat. China, while projecting him
as the “real” Panchen Lama, also recently
revealed that Nyima, who along with his family
were imprisoned after his name was announced by
Dalai Lama, was leading a normal life as a common Tibetan.
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