Tibetan spiritual leader Dalai Lama

Dharamshala: Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama on Monday congratulated Jagdeep Dhankhar who is set to assume office as the 14th Vice President of India.

The Dalai Lama has written a letter to the Indian Vice President-elect from Shewatsel in Leh, Ladakh where he is staying currently, his office in Dharamshala said.

Over the years, India has taken great strides in many fields, especially in science and technology. As someone who has lived here for most of my life, I consider myself very much part of Indian society. It is auspicious that you are taking up this august position on the occasion of the 75th anniversary of India’s independence, the Dalai Lama said in the letter to Dhankhar on Monday.

Dhankhar, who was the ruling National Democratic Alliance candidate, won the vice presidential election on Sunday. He secured a huge vote share of 74.36 per cent, the highest in the last six vice presidential elections, with 528 votes against joint Opposition pick Margaret Alva’s 182 votes.

The Dalai Lama said India is the land of ‘ahimsa’ (non-violence) and ‘karuna’ (compassion), ideas that can contribute much to the flourishing of humanity.

Mahatma Gandhi made the principle of non-violence spread across the world, and leaders from Dr Martin Luther King to Nelson Mandela turned to ‘ahimsa’ to try to address long-standing differences and social problems. For my part, in addition to applying this principle wherever possible, I am deeply committed to trying to create greater awareness of this treasure, together with the power of compassion, among my Indian brothers and sisters and across the world, he wrote in the letter.

The Buddhist leader said the international community today is becoming ever more aware of the leadership role that India can play in contributing to the peace and development of all humanity.

“With your long and rich experience of public service, I am sure you will be able to serve this great nation and its people with success,” Dalai Lama said.

Dhankhar will take oath as the 14th Vice President of India on August 11.

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