Attack Arunachal Pradesh’s Tawang was about Tibetan Buddhism more than China’s geopolitics

Tibet,Monestary,Arunachal Pradesh,Dalai Lama
Tibet, Monastery, Arunachal Pradesh, Dalai Lama | Image: PTI

The attack on Arunachal Pradesh’s Tawang was not just about China’s geopolitics but was more about Tibetan Buddhism and spirituality as the next Dalai Lama could be reincarnated in the district which will ruin the chance for China to select the next incarnation, Vas Shenoy writes in The Times of Israel.

On December 9, People’s Liberation Army troops contacted the LAC in Tawang Sector, contested by Indian troops in a firm and resolute manner. This face-off led to minor injuries to a few personnel from both sides.

It seems that the clash was just limited to geopolitics but it was more than that.

Tawang, which lies in the border state of Arunachal Pradesh, is home to Tawang Galdan Namgye Lhatse monastery, the oldest and second-largest monastery of Tibetan Buddhism outside of China’s control.

Established in 1681, Tawang Galdan Namgye Lhatse monastery can be a part of the mysterious puzzle to the future of Tibet, its spirituality and politics all of which are currently embodied by the 14th Dalai Lama, according to the author.

The current Dalai Lama, 87, is reportedly not in the best of health. His succession could be hugely contested, and China will try and nominate a new Dalai Lama, to control Tibetan Buddhism.

However, the Dalai Lama could also reincarnate in Tawang, home to several thousand ethnic Tibetan families who have lived around the monastery for generations.

Having control of the mountains around Tawang would help the Chinese army to make a further push to capture the monastery eventually, according to the author.

After the 14th Dalai Lama, the Tibetans have to search for the next successor and that will largely dictate the amount of force China needs to employ to retain its absolute control of Tibet, as per the author.

With unexpectedly rising discontent in China, Tibet, and Xinjiang against the supreme leader Xi Jinping whom the CCP has reelected for an unprecedented third term, the CCP is nervous about the current Dalai Lama’s visits to a disputed area in Ladakh by Indian military helicopter, according to the author.

While the current Dalai Lama lives, the status quo in Tibet will remain, a young dynamic Dalai Lama from Tawang might disturb the equilibrium that Xi Jinping has endeavoured to maintain in Tibet, taking with it other provinces like Xin Jiang and strengthening the revolt in Hong Kong as well as Taiwan’s independence, reported The Times of Israel.