Tibetan freedom torch to arrive in India July 10July 9th, 2008 - 4:47 pm ICT by IANS
New Delhi, July 9 (IANS) After travelling to major cities across the world, the Tibetan Freedom Torch will arrive here Thursday and pass via several Indian cities to reach Ladakh by the time of the opening of the Beijing Olympics in August. The torch relay, according to members of the Indian Tibet Support Group, is an attempt to highlight the cause of Tibetans at a time when all eyes are on China for the Olympics. There are over 130,000 exiled Tibetans globally with over 100,000 of them living in India alone.
“With the Beijing Olympics close by, the world’s eyes are on China. This is the ideal time for us to highlight our cause and demand a free Tibet. This is why the torch relay has been scheduled at this time,” Tsering Dorjee of the Core Group for the Tibetan Cause told IANS.
More than 25 Tibetan refugees are expected to participate in a six kilometre run here Thursday. The route of the run will be from the Samata Sthal to Jantar Mantar, the observatory in central Delhi that attracts many tourists.
“After Delhi, the torch will travel to Jaipur, then to Jodhpur, all the way to Ahmedabad in Gujarat. Mumbai, Kolkata and Bangalore are the major metros through which the torch will travel besides other places,” Dorjee said.
The relay, which started from Olympia in Greece on March 10, travelled through major cities in Europe, the US, Canada, Mexico, New Zealand, Taiwan and Uruguay. It will culminate in Leh Aug 8.