By Lobsang Wangyal
McLEOD GANJ, India, 18 November 2020
Fifty-six Tibetan Youth Congress (TYC) members left McLeod Ganj on a three-day motorcycle rally to highlight and seek support for the Tibetan cause.TYC is the biggest Tibetan organisation standing for an independent Tibet. The rally is being held to seek India’s recognition for an independent Tibet, to seek the release of political prisoners in Tibet, and to campaign for boycott of products made in China.
“The rally is to particularly highlight the grim human rights situation in Driru in the so-called Tibet Autonomous Region. China has clampdown in the area in the recent times with cases of Tibetans being imprisoned, tortured and the communications have been severed that the news is not heard in the outside world,” TYC President Gonpo Dhondup said.
India’s member of parliament and well-known local politician Kishan Kapoor attended the function to show his support for the Tibetan cause, and flagged off the rally. One Indian supporter for the Tibetan cause, Suresh from Manali, also joined the rally.
A police escort truck led the bikers down the hill. It is one of the rare occasions that a Tibetan rally has been given police escort. Dhondup said that that Himachal Pradesh police will provide police escort to the bikers until the end of the rally in Kinnaur. Police in every district will take turns to escort the rally.
The bikers will cover a distance of 450 kilometres, and will end their rally at Shongtong bridge, close to the Tibetan border, just outside the town of Kalpa on the Sutlej River on National Highway or Hindustan Tibet road in Kinnaur.
“Our first halt is in Bilaspur town. All the 56 bikers reached here well and safe,” Dhondup, who is accompanying the bikers, told Tibet Sun.