"--Indo-Asian news Service"
Dharamsala, May 25 - Nobel Peace laureates will attend a programme in India in October to mark the silver jubilee of the conferment of Nobel Peace Prize on Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama, an organiser said here Sunday.

The programme, being organised by the Tibetan government-in-exile Oct 2, will be held simultaneously here and in Delhi on Gandhi Jayanti, Tashi Phuntsok, co-chairman of the event organising committee of the Central Tibetan Administration, told IANS.

Phuntsok said 25 events will also be organised across the world to celebrate 2014 Year of His Holiness the Dalai Lama from June to December. These will conclude Dec 10, the day the Nobel Prize was conferred on him, with a key event.

He said the event would be organised on the occasion of the birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi to express appreciation for the Dalai Lama's commitment to promote non-violence and dialogue to resolve conflicts.

Phuntsok said the 78-year-old Buddhist monk's fellow Nobel Peace laureates will attend the programme.

In 1989, the Dalai Lama, who has been living in India since fleeing Tibet in 1959, won the Nobel Peace Prize for his non-violent struggle for his homeland.

This month the globetrotting monk was invited to the Nobel Institute in Oslo to mark the 25th anniversary of his Nobel Peace Prize.

Chairman of the Nobel Committee Thorbjrn Jagland, who introduced the Dalai Lama with members of the committee, said: It is 25 years since he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize and the Nobel Committee still has one member from that time.

Jagland said the Dalai Lama was awarded the prize in recognition of his efforts to bring freedom to the Tibetan people through non-violence and his concern for the natural environment.

You are a man of peace, a religious leader worth listening to, and someone worth speaking to, he said.

The Dalai Lama during his visit to the Nobel Institute May 8 said he was in California when he heard the announcement. He was asked how he felt.

I said...not much different. I am a simple Buddhist monk, no more, no less. But since the prize was in recognition of my commitment to non-violence and my work for peace, I felt it was a great honour.

Later, when Aung San Suu Kyi and Liu Xiaobo were awarded the Peace prize and they were in difficult circumstances, I felt it would have been a source of encouragement and inspiration for them.

The Dalai Lama, who has spoken in favour of greater autonomy for Tibet from China rather than complete independence, described conferment of the Nobel Peace Prize on him as a blessing for him.

Of course, as a blessing. I remember Archbishop Desmond Tutu, my friend and spiritual brother, telling me how difficult it was for him to meet some people before, which became much easier after he was awarded the prize, he said in Oslo.

The Tibetan government-in-exile, which is not recognised by any country, is based in this northern Indian hill town.

--Indo-Asian news Service

vg/deb/vt


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