Tibetan group appeals against Olympic torch in India

April 2nd, 2008 - 5:47 pm ICT by admin  

Dharamsala, April 2 (IANS) Despite actor Aamir Khan and several sports stars opting to go ahead with the carrying of the Olympic torch later this month in India, a Tibetan splinter group will continue to campaign against it, activists said here Wednesday. Dhondup Lhadar Pochungtsang, general secretary of the Tibetan Youth Congress (TYC) said: “Our constant appeals will definitely change the minds of Indian torch bearers who are scheduled to take part in the ceremony in New Delhi April 17.”

The TYC has also started a signature campaign that will be sent to Bollywood actor Aamir Khan to dissuade him from carrying the torch, he said.

“Aamir Khan has been supporting human rights activities for a long time. And we will continue to appeal to him to refrain from the torch relay ceremony. We will also send him a written appeal through a signature campaign,” he said.

This appeal comes Khan’s way despite his decision to participate in the Olympic torch relay. He in turn has already appealed to Tibetans via his blog to disassociate the issue of human rights violations from the Olympic Games.

The Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama has already expressed his opinion many times that he was in favour of the Beijing Olympic games.

Indian Foreign Minister Pranab Mukherjee Tuesday urged the Dalai Lama not to do anything that could “hurt” India’s ties with China while staying here as the country’s “guest”.

But some Tibetan NGOs including the TYC are against the Games.

The anti-China protests that erupted in Tibet March 10 have led to the death of 140 people, according to the Tibetan government-in-exile. But the Chinese government says only 22 people have been killed in the unrest.

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