Life of Tibetans in exile captured, displayed

DC | January 04, 2014, 09.01 am IST

A mother takes a look at the Tibetan photographic exhibition that is being organised in a Coimabatore hotel. —DC

A mother takes a look at the Tibetan photographic exhibition that is being organised in a Coimabatore hotel. —DC

Coimbatore: Tibet Museum of the Department of Infor­ma­tion and International Rel­a­­­tions, Central Tibetan Adm­i­n­i­stration and Frie­nds of Tibet, Coimb­a­tore have org­anised a pho­to­ exhibition featuring photographic nar­­ratives of the life of Tibetans in exile and the ongoing Tibetan self-immolations in Tibet.

The exhibition titled – ‘Tibet Journey into Exile’ portrays photographic narratives of the journey of Tibetans into exile for last 50 years and the efforts made by elderly Tibetans under spiritual leader Dalai Lama.

Tibet’s cult­ure, language and religion, building a sustainable community andestablishing a robust democratic society in exile, following Tibetans escape into exile after China’s occupation in 1959­ is portrayed.

Information is given about the ongoing wave of Tibetan self-immolation in­side Tibet with 124 Tibe­t­ans setting themselves ablaze between February 2009 and December 2013 whereas the fate, whereabouts and condition of the 17 who survived remain unknown.

According to Prof Anto Varghese of the Friends of Tibet, Coim­ba­tore, the genuine aspiration for basic freedom and the preservation of Tibetan culture and identity has been met with repressive measures, leading to political repression, economic marginalisation, cultural assimilation and environmental destruction in Tibet.

“In the absence of space for conventional form of protests, Tibetans have re­sorted to the drastic action of setting oneself on fire, believing it is the only way to bring the world’s attention to the plight of the Tibetan people.

The ongoing self-immolation by an increasing number of Tibetans in Tibet is a part of this long-standing form of protest but its scale is unprecedented. Through this exhibition we look to inform global community about current situation inside Tibet and the reason behind Tibetans taking drastic step like self-immolations”, Prof Anto said.