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Should Rangzenpas vote for Lukar Jam or not?

posted Sep 7, 2015, 4:21 PM by The Tibetan Political Review   [ updated Sep 7, 2015, 4:26 PM ]


By Tenzin Nyima 

New York

The recent comments on social media has made me question whether Lukar Jam’s stand for Rangzen is more significant than his other statements for his candidacy.

When the Tibetan National Congress endorsed him for Sikyong 2016, in their statement, one of the major points was that: “Lukar Jam stands firmly for the principle of non-violence”[1].

At his first public talk in Dharamsala[2][32.53min – 34.18min], he mentioned that Non-violence and other's before self are just mere words and have no meaning especially with regards to the Education Policy. One of the principles of Tibetan Democracy is Non-Violence and having that as a guiding principle for education, I find no fault with it. He further stated that if you are attacked, you should attack back. How is this the principle of non-violence or is it the principle of an eye for an eye. So the reason why Tibetan National Congress supports Lukar Jam seems hollow if they don't even know that.

When Lukar Jam says that he doesn’t question what His Holiness the Dalai Lama has done for Tibet but this is what he writes in Tehelka dated July 11th, 2015.

“Although the Dalai Lama has failed to restore freedom in Tibet, he has worked tirelessly to make Dharamsala the Vatican of Tibetan Buddhism, at times even at the expense of Tibetan national interest.”[3]

I am not sure what to think in terms of this article. Is he saying that His Holiness has cared more about making Dharamsala an abode of Tibetan Buddhism rather than working for Tibet? Is he belittling all that His Holiness has done for Tibet and Tibetans since coming into Exile.

If he becomes Sikyong, he says that the Dialogue process will never happen[4][24.56min – 26.45min], if so what are his plans, I fail to understand. His Holiness has for time immemorial asked Rangzen Supporters to bring him a plan for Independence and till date there has been none.

One of the first thing Lukar Jam said he will do if he becomes Sikyong is that he will change the name of CTA to Tibetan Government in Exile no matter what.[5] For your information, the name Central Tibetan Administration was changed according to the devolution of political powers of His Holiness the Dalai Lama and based on concerns of political and other sensitivities regarding the name from India as well as the State of Himachal Pradesh, therefore the name was changed by the parliament. So the first thing Lukar Jam wants to do is change what His Holiness has stated out of concern.

Lukar Jam, the President of Ghu-Chu-Sum has been unable to change the stand of his own organization which stands for Middle-Way and he has the effrontery to say that he can change CTA.

I am not even sure why he is still the President of Ghu-Chu-Sum as the recent controversies are if you don’t support Rangzen, leave TYC but if you support Rangzen, you can even run an organization standing for Middle Way. This should have been a 2-way street but it seems that Democracy should only work when you support Rangzen. Where is his integrity?

Lukar Jam has said that for Tibetan people's cause, there maybe bad people who practice Good Lha and Good People who practice Bad Lha.[6] When has a Dogyal Practitioner ever contributed for the Tibetan Struggle. Being a Tibetan and the way they are protesting against His Holiness, I don’t think I have anything more to say against them. Even Tendor, former Executive Director of SFT, is against Dogyal Practioners when he wrote an article on Huffington Post[7], but when Lukar Jam says something like this, Tendor is still able to support him just because he is a Rangzen advocate. Where is Tendor's integrity?

On 30th June, 2008 in Tibet Times[8] and another article on the same lines on his own blog,[9] Lukar Jam has written cleverly but the connotation is the same,

རྒྱ་གཞུང་གིས་སྤེལ་བའི་རྒྱལ་གཅེས་ཆོས་གཅེས་ཀྱི་ལས་འགུལ་དང་ཤུག་ལྡན་བཀག་སྡོམས་ཀྱི་ལོག་སྤྱོད་རང་བཞིན་ལ་ཧེ་བག་སྤུ་ཙམ་མེད་"

The Patriotic Re-education policy by the Chinese Government is no different from how Dogyal Practitioners are being restricted to practice.”

Can he please explain what he meant by that? Doesn’t His Holiness have the fundamental right to say that he requests Dogyal Practitioners not to attend his teaching? Comparing Patriotic Re-education to this is a huge disservice to those who have undergone patriotic re-education and Lukar Jam may even have been the recipient of that as well.

The recent debates on social media about Lukar Jam is that don’t bring His Holiness in the debate and Lukar Jam has never said anything against His Holiness. Whether he has said anything directly or not, the above evidence and many others point to the contrary and it is for oneself to decide.

The recent article condemning Speaker Penpa Tsering for saying that he will not share a podium with Lukar Jam has even been translated and published on Rangzen Alliance[10] as well as Tibetan Political Review. This is the not the first time Penpa Tsering has said this and he has said that a year or so before the election as well. Is it not the right of a candidate to choose who they want to debate with. In some elections around the world, there is not even one public debate. Having a public debate is not about democracy and please don’t make it so and it is Penpa Tsering's fundamental right in a democracy whether he wants to participate in a debate or not. The largest Democracy in the world is India and can anyone please direct me to a link of public debate between Rahul Gandhi and Narendra Modi. Also why were only 10 out of 16 republican candidates part of the first G.O.P. televised debate?

After listening to a number of talks by Penpa Tsering, there is not one mention of Rangzen as a reason for not participating, however he has said that he will never share a podium with Lukar Jam because of Lukar Jam's defaming statements against His Holiness.

I would beg all of you not to say that Lukar Jam was misunderstood, from the comments above, there is no misunderstanding. Lukar Jam said publicly that he has respect for His Holiness(But I guess what he means is that he is against the Middle Way, Dialogue, Non-Violence, “Dogyal Persecution”(I use this word “persecution” because this is what I understood from his article in Tibet Times as mentioned above) but he still respects His Holiness.

I understand when Lukar Jam says that politically he doesn't agree with the Middle-Way policy introduced by His Holiness as a Rangzen advocate. However questioning the integrity of His Holiness as mentioned above is appalling and looking at some of the well known Rangzenpa's sidestepping this personality of Lukar Jam is shameful.

Just because Penpa Tsering candidly has said that he will never join Lukar Jam in the same podium, the Rangzen supporters have started condemning him but fail to condemn Lukar Jam for his statements against His Holiness.

It is wrong, when someone says that Rangzen Supporters are against His Holiness but when someone also says that standing for Middle way is “Surrender of our Independence” is wrong. Lets not make this about Rangzen or Middle-Way.

I am writing this because I think some young Tibetans especially in the West are carried away by Lukar Jam’s stand for Rangzen and are encouraged to vote for him so that this election becomes a statement for Rangzen especially for the preliminary election. However what many fail to understand is that just because someone stands for Rangzen doesn’t make him the right candidate. One should analyze what one stands for and more importantly what the person can do to resolve the Tibetan Issue and honestly all these pseudo intellectuals and activists are incomparable to what His Holiness represents and what he has done for Tibet and the Tibetan Struggle. Don’t even try to put someone like Lukar Jam up there.

I will personally never vote for Lukar Jam not because he stands for Rangzen but because of his disrespect and his cunningness of saying everything that His Holiness stands for is wrong but at the same time saying that he respects His Holiness and has never made any allegation. It is disheartening to see that of all the Rangzenpa's out there, the Rangzen Basket has only Lukar Jam. Whether Lukar Jam is saying the truth or not, this is for you to decide.


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Footnotes:

[1] http://www.tibetnc.org/2015/08/19/the-tibetan-national-congress-endorses-lukar-jam-atsock-for-sikyong-2016/

[2] [32.53 – 34.18] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uk-Clb3qULw

[3] http://www.tehelka.com/2015/07/where-will-the-dalai-lama-reincarnate/

[4] [24.56 – 26.45] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uk-Clb3qULw

[5] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fEwgaAwaHao

[6] https://www.facebook.com/tashi.phuntsok.16/videos/10153551998206460/?pnref=story

[7] http://tibettimes.net/blogs.php?id=9&post_id=24 [The article is no longer available Tibet Times but I have attached the screenshot of a Google Search]

[8] http://atsocklukarjam.blogspot.in/2009/06/blog-post_8500.html

[9] http://www.huffingtonpost.com/tenzin-dorjee/6-things-to-know-about-th_b_6104716.html?ir=India&adsSiteOverride=in

[10] http://www.rangzen.net/2015/09/01/a-mind-boggling-statement/







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