Karmapa asked to apprise monastery officials of Indian laws

Thursday, February 17, 2011

DHARAMSALA - Top officials of the 17th Karmapa say the central government, while signalling a clean chit to the Tibetan leader in the controversy over unaccounted foreign currency, wants him to register his trust and also apprise monastery functionaries on Indian laws.

“It’s true that we met senior home ministry officials in Delhi yesterday (Wednesday) and they seemed quite convinced that the Karmapa had no role in dealing with financial affairs. The money had come in the form of donations and offerings only,” a visibly upbeat senior monastery functionary told IANS.

He was part of the delegation of the Karmapa’s monastery officials that met Union Home Secretary G.K. Pillai.

The meeting was aimed at clearing the picture regarding the role of the 17th Karmapa Ogyen Trinley Dorje in managing financial affairs after the recovery of foreign and Indian currency worth Rs.70 million from his monastery on the outskirts of Dharamsala.

Monastery sources said the union home ministry has asked the delegation to register the Karmae Garchen Trust that the Karmapa heads with the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act and to apprise monastery functionaries, including the Karmapa, on the Indian laws.

“We assured full cooperation to the government regarding the ongoing probe being carried out by investigating agencies,” the monastery official added.

Police Jan 28 recovered Indian and foreign currency, including the bulk of it Chinese yuans and $600,000, from the Karmapa’s Gyuto Tantric University and Monastery, on the outskirts of this town, from where the Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama heads his government-in-exile.

Seven people, including the Karmapa’s aide Rubgi Chosang, also known as Shakti Lama, are in police custody.

The Himachal Pradesh government had earlier announced a clean chit for the Karmapa, but it took a U-turn on its statement.

The Karmapa fled Tibet and sought refuge in India in January 2000. Since then, he has mostly lived at the monastery in Sidhbari near here.

Filed under: Religion

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