The 17th Gyalwang Karmapa, Urgyen Trinley Dorje, is presently visiting Arunachal Pradesh. The visit has been enabled by a recent decision by the Cabinet Committee on Security, to lift restrictions on the Karmapa’s travel within India. The visit may be expected to rile China, which not only claims Arunachal as its own territory but also saw the Karmapa flee from its custody 17 years ago.
China claims Arunachal Pradesh as an extension of its claim over Tibet, characterising Arunachal as ‘southern Tibet’. Urgyen Trinley Dorje had dramatically fled to India in 1999 to escape Chinese government restrictions on his religious studies.
China uncomfortable over Karmapa’s visit
However, despite the discomfort over Karmapa’s visit to Arunachal Pradesh under the watch of the Indian government, China is unlikely to react to the visit, as it is likely to find itself isolated over the issue.
His visit to Arunachal was made possible by a recent decision by the Cabinet Committee on Security, that lifted restrictions on the religious head’s travel within India. Union Minister of State for Home Affairs Kiren Rijiju accompanied the Karmapa on his visit to Arunachal Pradesh.
Rijiju also tweeted the photographs of his visit to the state, indicating full support of the Central government to Karmapa’s visit to Arunachal Pradesh despite the well-known stand of China in the matter.
It may be mentioned that the Karmapa is head of the Karma Kagyu school, one of the four main schools of Tibetan Buddhism.