BANGALORE, India, 5 October 2020
Krishna in the Mahabharata resembles the epitome of truth and justice. He is not an impartial and neutral spectator. He is very much sided — sided for and with truth always. Wherever truth lies, there he stands no matter what. Tibetan people too, looking to the recent past, have been more or less like Krishna, by collectively standing with and for truth — fighting and defending the system whenever it runs on risk.
I see a parallel theme run (maybe coincidentally) between Yudhishthira of the Mahabharata and Penpa Tsering of the exile polity, especially with regards to some of his recent political accounts. Both have never minded taking personal loss, especially when it helps the greater public interest, but have never spared even an inch when the greater public interest is at stake.
Yudhishthira was aided and guided by Krishna almost throughout in his fight to uphold the virtue of righteousness. PT needs a Krishna and I have found his Krishna already. His Krishna is none other than the Tibetan people as a whole, who will withstand and ensure the final and complete victory of democracy by electing him to Sikyong in this 2021 general election.
I am not going to list what PT will do if he gets elected here, because people don’t need any explanation of his manifestos. His past legacy is auto-explanatory for what he is going to deliver if he is elected.
This piece is an attempt to throw some light on how empowerment and safeguarding of our democracy is crucially associated with voting for PT, a theme more of political and historical significant than a candidate prelude — which we may miss if not alerted now. Plus, of course, many socio-economics deliveries we are likely to gain from his election to Sikyong also come into consideration.
As the author of this piece, it is my responsibility to establish and convince my readers satisfactorily as to how there lies a political significance in supporting PT in this coming 2021 election.
Electing PT this time is nothing but conferring a compete victory to our democracy, which unfortunately in 2017 suffered some dent in the hand of our incumbent elected Cabinet by terminating him for reasons.
I wouldn’t have authored this piece if that termination was a personal dealing. It may look very personal on surface observation in an unanalyzed and casual understanding. However, at a deeper look in a political sense, even a person of average intelligence will understand that it was more an invasion of our democratic system than a loss of an individual’s job, which many honestly believe was simply due to lack of political knowledge, which again is an understandable and excusable mistake.
He happily absorbed the personal loss part — no matter how awkward, unreasonable, and arbitrary the Cabinet decision has appeared — by not demanding a reason for his termination, while sitting in the world’s most successful democratic nation blessed with abundant recourse to avail of legal remedies to claim damages.
However, the Cabinet decision being arbitrary and undemocratic, the whole system also has been toppled along with his termination. And to restore the toppled system, he moved court, and the rest we know. The system, to the due of PT’s effort, has been positioned back to the initial. But it is yet to receive hold of earth beneath to stand itself independently in the track of history.
For that our democratic system is eagerly awaiting people’s acknowledgement of Case. 20 verdict given by court for its final and complete reinstallation. And this 2021 general election is the right and never -coming-back platform where you can offer that acknowledgement by electing the same PT through whose medium our democracy was hijacked and toppled.
It’s about safeguarding yours and mine democracy. It’s about your children and grandchildren looking back to this historic victory of democracy with pride and honor. It’s about creating a history of victory of democracy which you can narrate to your children and their children with sense of proud and honor.
I must also tell that the other candidates in this election are also good and competent people. But this political significant of democracy empowerment is not associated with them for the obvious reason we know.
Moreover, PT is not lacking an inch from the competency perspective, compared to that of his peer candidates. If he is lacking competency in some or another portfolio, that poses a risk of losing certain benefits which could have avoided if some other candidate who could possibly deliver that which PT can’t is elected, then indeed we must have a reservation about electing him despite this political significance I am talking about here. But that is not the case. He is well equipped with all the required administrative skills with no less amount, if not more, with a span of 20 years’ experience.
His competency is well proven beyond reasonable doubt from his single-handed victory, in individual capacity, in Case no 20, against the very authority that unjustly terminated him.
It’s not an easy task for an incompetent person to win that way. Merely having the truth on your side is not sufficient to come out as a winner. The competency to establish truth in the court of law — that too against the unjust doings of government — takes so much courage, bravery, and wisdom.
Penpa Tsering is not so important. Many Sikyongs will come and go every five years. But your democracy is important. It will and has to stay intact. History may question us if the dent that our democracy has suffered is not cured back to health for no reason. Posterity will question us for our failure to safeguard our democracy when needed. And for that reason, voting for PT is a call that both past and coming history are demanding from past and future distances.
The unborn coming generations are refusing to accept legacy dues if the dent suffered in the democracy is not completely cured. The gone generation will not forgive if we dare to pass a dented democracy to the next one.
Nothing will be more painful for China than seeing a common citizen winning through legal means against the specific unjust act of authority, especially when it is happening in the exile Tibetan polity which, for decades, they have attempted to portray to the world as nothing more than a dissatisfied dissenting bourgeois clique. And what will be more devastating for China than the former is seeing the same individual (who suffered injustice; fought and won through legal means) democratically getting elected to the highest political post of the system. Given this, voting for PT is directly hitting the dragon where it hurts the most. Because after all, it all speaks of what kind of system we have in place for our governance, the democracy and its values — which millions oppressed common Chinese envy, and at the same time hope for also. But failing to do this will definitely give a boost to China to strengthen the grip on all its occupied sovereigns, including Tibet, which may become a cause for unnecessarily prolonging the struggle. Because, very reasonably they (CCP) will have a good case to show us that their (dictatorial) works and ours (Democracy) doesn’t, giving our own case of failure to protect democracy to back up their claim.
PT being a long-professing advocate of the Middle-Way policy, voting for him is in addition a channel for you to show your unwavering and transparent support to His Holiness’ guided and people’s chosen Middle-Way policy for the resolution of the Tibet Issue.
Krishna’s efforts to coronate Yudhishthira back to the throne of Hatsinapur is actually, in a deeper political sense, nothing but restoration of a fallen system and thereby protecting justice for the good of all. Likewise, we the Tibetan people also in the form of Krishna can heal the dent our system has suffered by voting for PT.
Until the coming of this specific understanding to my mind recently, I was very hesitant to vote for PT in this coming election. Because it is not a good reason to vote for him simply because truth lies on his side in the Case 20. Case 20 and General election are two different things, if such a political and historical significance is not inseparably connected between the two. But this interconnected link between Case 20 and the election leaves me with no option other than to vote for him.
With this conviction, I am going to vote for PT this time to confer the complete victory to our democracy and system. And I am not going to ask anyone of you to vote for PT also. I will leave the choice absolutely to your sweet will. But yes, when I am on the way to do this, I will definitely turn back to check if I am alone in this mission to confer complete victory to our democratic system, or are there many others as well who, like me, want to do the same and create a great history that will kick China hard right there in the midst of this ongoing Covid Pandemic mess.
Like Krisha’s Gita was preached at Kurukshetra the minute before the commencement of the Mahabharata war only for those who don’t know, so too this my piece is also for those don’t know and not for those who know everything, but don’t want to know anything still.
If PT is Yudhishthira, you can be the Krishna! As simple as that.
About the author
Kunchok Gyatso, LLM, is a Sr Legal Associate at Exigent Group Ltd, Bangalore, India.