Gandhinagar, Gujarat, India 18 January 2008 (The Statesman) - 'If Indo-Chinese relations improve, it is good for the Tibetan cause,' the Dalai Lama, who heads the Tibetan government in exile, told a gathering at the Indian Institute of Management-Ahmedabad, today. The answer was in reply to a question on Dr Manmohan Singh's recent visit to China.
The Dalai Lama said good relations between India and China 'is necessary for peace in this continent'.
He reminded the people that nations have nuclear weapons. China has 1.2 billion people, whereas India has a billion people. 'Therefore, friendship based on trust is important,' he said.
On the Tibetan issue, the Dalai Lama said: 'We don't live in Tibet but it is in our interest to see that Tibet is modernised. As far as material benefits are concerned, these can be gained from China.' The Dalai Lama, however, gave the rider: 'We should have meaningful autonomy.'
The Dalai Lama also called India 'the guru' and Tibet 'the student', for the help that India has provided in the last 49 years.
'The Government of India has not only given shelter but also long-term help.'
He added: 'I think India has given maximum help but sometimes there has been contradictions.' The Dalali Lama said: 'When we asked India to raise the issue at the UN, India was reluctant.'
He added that 'to keep alive the spirit of the Tibetans, India agreed to separate schools for the Tibetan refugees. This also helps to retain the Tibetan identity'.
The Dalai Lama also spoke on Ethics and Business, where he laid emphasis on compassion, while dealing with other human beings.
He said money is important but it does not mean that people with money are happy. 'If you concentrate only on the profits, it leads to exploitation,' he said.
The Dalai Lama described himself as 'a Buddhist Marxist', adding that capitalists concentrated only on maximum profits, whereas the Marxists want to distribute the profits equally. 'I feel that the Marxist economy is more ethical,' he told the audience.