All religions show way to peace: Dalai Lama

Spiritual leader meets man who escorted him to India 58 yrs ago

Guwahati: “Religion is entirely an individual choice. Change of religion sometimes creates more confusion. Therefore, it is always better keep original faith and try to understand about the value of religious teachings for peace and happiness.”
The 14th Dalai Lama Tenzin Gyatso observed this while speaking at the felicitation hosted by the Government of Assam to on his visit to the state on the occasion of Namami Brahmaputra festival being held here.
The Dalai Lama visited the festival venue at Kachomari Ghat and offered his obeisance to the River Brahmaputra.
“While I was in Tibet, I thought Buddhism as the best religion. But after coming to India and interacting with people belonging to different faiths, I have realised that all religions are good as all of them have emphasised on human love and compassion. It is always better to carry out closer conduct and understand the teachings of other religions before changing one’s own religion”, The Dalai Lama commented while speaking on inter-religious faith.
Stating that India showed him a bigger horizon of religion, the spiritual guru also advised the gathering to put reasons over faith while embracing religion adding that Indian thoughts are very helpful to understand reality he further stressed on secular and ethical education as the key to development and human peace.
“Change is always in the mind of the people as most of the problems are created by them. Main issue before humanity today is to bring peace and happiness in the world. Human intelligence shouldn’t be controlled by negativity but by compassion and love”, the Nobel Laureate for Peace stated.
The Dalai Lama who also interacted with the people and gave reply to their queries.
The Dalai Lama was also overwhelmed meeting Assam Rifles personnel Naren Chandra Das who had escorted him when he entered Assam for the first time in 1959 after escaping from Tibet. “Thank you very much…. I am very very happy to meet such an old member of the Assam Rifles who guarded and escorted me to India 58 years ago,” a visibly emotional Dalai Lama said on the occasion. “Looking at your face, I now realise I must be very old too,” he said to Das in jest.
Dressed in his Assam Rifles uniform, 76-year-old Das, later told PTI that he escorted the Dalai Lama as his armed guard in 1959, two years after joining the force in 1957.
At that time, he was posted at Lungla near the China border after completing his training at Tawang in Arunachal Pradesh, he said. “Guards of Assam Rifles Platoon no. 9 had brought the Dalai Lama from Zuthangbo and handed him over to five of us at Shakti. We brought him to Lungla from where he was escorted on his onward journey to Tawang by another group of guards,” the retired jawan said.
Governor Banwarilal Purohit who also graced the programme expressed the hope that with the blessings of The Dalai Lama the Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal would be able to perform more resolutely to bring about a significant development to the state and soon Assam would be one of the top ranked states of the country.
Lauding the initiative taken by Government of Assam to glorify the Brahmaputra and thereby to promote culture, civilization, rich potential and resources of the state, the Governor hoped that the festival would take the people closer to the Brahmaputra.
The Governor also advised the state government to call all the senior officials from the districts to the venue of Namami Brahmaputra festival and administer them the oath of total transparency in administration.
The Governor along with other dignitaries released the brochure of  ‘Festival of Faith’, which the Government of Assam in joint association with India Foundation proposes to hold in the month of May, 2017.
Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal while speaking on the occasion lamented the fact that in spite of enormous contribution and presence, Brahmaputra is most often negatively projected in the country as the river that causes flood and erosion. “This is a gross injustice to the Brahmaputra”, the chief minister added.
Stating that the Brahmaputra’s contributions to the state’s life and economy is immeasurable, Sonowal said that state Government had organized Namami Brahmaputra to showcase the rich potential and possibility of this river to augment Assam’s tourism, culture and economy. (With inputs from PTI)

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