Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

Postby admin » Mon Nov 25, 2019 3:38 am

Richard C. Blum
by Wikipedia
Accessed: 11/24/19



"Tai Situpa's camp was trying to follow our every move, and revised their story as we discovered one fact after the next in the interviews," Shimatsu told me. "Dalai Lama camp, ditto. Representatives of Chinese President Jiang Zemin were eager to get the video and were overjoyed at the fact that they could get the real story. They admitted the episode was mysterious, that the Tibet Autonomous Region was blocking the President's inquiries about the affair. But they also said that the video was much too explosive for broadcast in China." Many journalists requested copies and television stations in Hong Kong, Taiwan, and elsewhere in Asia aired excerpts from the film.

Shimatsu's team discovered that a helicopter that picked up Ogyen Trinley in Nepal was owned by a company that had previously done work for the United States CIA, Fishtail Air. Even more suspicious, the Fishtail Air office had lost all flight records tor the day of Ogyen Trinley's pickup. "When Susanna Chung and Prakash Khanal broke the story of the Mustang escape route and the Fishtail Air helicopter pickup at Thorang-La, I rushed the story and video to the South China Morning Post in Hong Kong Internet news department," Shimatsu told me. "Their news producers were very excited and promised me five thousand dollars."

"Then we had to clear the story through editors of the print version of the newspaper. We were greeted by three editors. They were female, and I suspect two of them were MI-6 (British intelligence) agents. They killed the story with totally bogus questions, all of which were proven on tape and in notes. They wanted to know who our key contact was in Mustang (a businessman) but I refused to disclose his identity, since he could easily be killed by the Manang smugglers involved with the Karmapa escape." So the South China Morning Post killed Shimatsu's story.

Outside of East Asia, Shimatsu's film got little attention, and he attributes some of that to government influence and some to media bias. He claims that the United States government had an interest in Ogyen Trinley, perhaps because of lobbying by Tibetan rights groups in Washington who support the Dalai Lama. Shimatsu singled out the American Himalayan Foundation in particular, funded by San Francisco real-estate billionaire Richard Blum, husband of Senator Dianne Feinstein from California.

"Plus, most Western journalists, including Chinese journalists in Hong Kong, are pretty brainwashed by the 'human rights' nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), since they wrongly assume that these NGOs are honest little guys fighting for truth and justice," rather than groups with their own biases -- often in favor of Western governments -- that cause them to paint a one-sided picture of alleged rights abuses. Shimatsu felt that by making his film, he was striking a blow for press freedom. "This media monopoly made it all the more important to produce an independent documentary using portable DV mini- cameras, so Flight of A Karmapa was one of the first documentaries using this new media."

-- Buddha's Not Smiling: Uncovering Corruption at the Heart of Tibetan Buddhism Today, by Erik D. Curren

Richard C. Blum
Blum at UC Berkeley in 2009
First Gentleman of San Francisco
In role
January 20, 1980 – January 8, 1988
Preceded by Gina Moscone (First Lady)
Succeeded by Sherry Agnos (First Lady)
Personal details
Born Richard Charles Blum
July 31, 1935 (age 84)
San Francisco, California, U.S.
Nationality American
Spouse(s) Dianne Feinstein (m. 1980)
Alma mater University of California, Berkeley (BS, MBA)
Occupation Investment banker

Richard Charles Blum (born July 31, 1935[1]) is an American investment banker and husband of United States Senator Dianne Feinstein. He is the chairman and president of Blum Capital, an equity investment management firm that acts as general partner for various investment partnerships and provides investment advisory services. Blum also serves in various boards of directors of several companies, including CB Richard Ellis, where until May 2009 he served as the chairman of that board. He has been a regent of the University of California since 2002.[2]

Personal life and education

Blum was born in San Francisco, California, to a Jewish family and attended San Francisco public schools.[3] He received his B.S. in business administration in 1958 and an M.B.A. in 1959 from the Haas School of Business of the University of California, Berkeley.[4]

In the 1970s, Blum supported then Mayor of San Francisco George Moscone. After Moscone's assassination, Blum supported the new mayor Dianne Feinstein; they married in 1980.[3]


Blum founded Blum Capital in 1975 and pioneered the firm’s hybrid Strategic Block/Private Equity investment strategy. Mr. Blum previously served as Chairman of the board of directors of CB Richard Ellis, as well as serving as director on the boards of directors of three other portfolio companies: Fairmont Raffles Holdings International Ltd., Current Media, L.L.C. and Myer Pty Ltd. in Australia. Mr. Blum co-founded Newbridge Capital in the early 1990s and is Co-Chairman of TPG Asia V, L.P. (the successor fund to the Newbridge franchise that has been incorporated into Texas Pacific Group).[citation needed]

Mr. Blum has served on the boards of many prominent companies, including Northwest Airlines Corporation, Glenborough Realty Trust, Inc., Korea First Bank, URS Corporation and National Education Corporation. In addition, Mr. Blum is active in numerous non-profit organizations. He is the founder and Chairman of the American Himalayan Foundation and is Honorary Consul to Mongolia and Nepal. Mr. Blum also serves as a member of the Advisory Board of the Haas School of Business at the University of California at Berkeley.

Blum joined investment brokerage Sutro & Co. at the age of 23, becoming a partner before age 30.[3] At Sutro, Blum led a partnership that acquired Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus for $8m, selling it to Mattel four years later for $40m.[3] On the back of this deal Blum started in business for himself in 1975, founding what is now Blum Capital Partners;[3] a stake in URS Corp. was one of its first investments.[3]

On April 25, 2009, Blum was honored with the Berkeley Medal by UC Berkeley Chancellor Robert Birgenau in front of the 14th Dalai Lama. The talk was sponsored by his American Himalayan Foundation and the Blum Center for Developing Economies at UC Berkeley.[5]


On March 12, 2002, Blum was appointed by California Governor Gray Davis to a 12-year term as one of the Regents of the University of California,[6] and he was nominated for re-appointment to another 12-year term in 2014. Blum also serves on the boards of the following companies:

• CB Richard Ellis (Chairman)
• Newbridge Capital (co-Chairman)
• Current TV
• Blum Capital

Blum is also the primary owner of Career Education Corporation.[7]


Blum has been a major contributor via the Blum Family Foundation to many charities and educational institutions. He has a strong interest in Tibet and Tibetan Buddhism and in 1981 he attempted to climb Mount Everest from the Tibetan side with Sir Edmund Hillary. He is the chairman and founder of the apolitical American Himalayan Foundation (AHF), which has given millions of dollars to build hospitals and schools in Tibet and Nepal but has refrained from political involvement with the Chinese control of Tibet. Other of Blum’s not-for-profit endeavors include service as Trustee of The Carter Center; former Co-Chairman of The World Conference of Religions for Peace; Member of Governing Council of The Wilderness Society;[8] member of the Board of Trustees of The Brookings Institution; member of the Board of Trustees of the American Cancer Society Foundation; member of the Board of Directors of the National Democratic Institute;[9] and is a Member of the Board of Trustees of the Richard C. Blum Center for Developing Economies at the University of California, Berkeley,to which he provided $15 million for the Center which is focused on finding solutions to address the crisis of extreme poverty and disease in the developing world.[10] He's given to the University of California at San Francisco (UCSF), Merced and Los Angeles (UCLA) and Sonoma State University, as well as Macalester College. He pledged $1.25 million to the University of San Francisco (USF) in 2007, and another $1.5 million to USF for "global education" in 2019.[11] He has served on many other boards including the Seva Foundation, as Chairman of the Himalayan Foundation, as a Trustee on Brookings Institute. He has also supported local charities including the San Francisco Food Bank and the John Burton Foundation for Children Without Homes. In the arts and culture, he has made grants to the Creative Visions Foundation, the Daniel Pearl Foundation, San Francisco's Asian Art Museum, the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, and the Geffen Playhouse in Los Angeles.[12]


Blum's wife, Senator Dianne Feinstein, has received scrutiny due to her husband's government contracts and extensive business dealings with China and her past votes on trade issues with the country. Blum has denied any wrongdoing.[13] URS Corp, which Blum had a substantial stake in, bought EG&G, a leading provider of technical services and management to the U.S. military, from The Carlyle Group in 2002; EG&G subsequently won a $600m defense contract.[3]

Blum and his wife have also received significant scrutiny and criticism due to his 75% stake in contractor Tutor Perini which received hundreds of millions to billions of dollars in military contracts in Iraq and Afghanistan during the US occupation of those countries.[14][15] Critics have argued that business contracts with the US government awarded to a company controlled by Blum raise a potential conflict-of-interest issue with the voting and policy activities of his wife.[16]

In 2009, Feinstein introduced legislation to provide $25 billion in taxpayer money to the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp, a government agency that had recently awarded her husband's real estate firm, CB Richard Ellis, what the Washington Times called "a lucrative contract to sell foreclosed properties at compensation rates higher than the industry norms."[17]

The United States Postal Service has entered into an exclusive contract with CB Richard Ellis to sell buildings that currently house post offices.[18]


1. "AHF Annual Dinner : Events | American Himalayan Foundation" Archived July 28, 2014, at the Wayback Machine.
2. Rone Tempest (November 18, 2005). "Deal-Maker's Worlds Mesh at Party in S.F." Los Angeles Times.
3. Abate, Tom. (May 11, 2003). The man behind URS, next to Sen. Feinstein, San Francisco Chronicle, pp. I1-I2 |Although Jewish, the deeply philosophical Blum has taken a keen interest in Buddhism and Eastern philosophy
4. "Regent Richard C. Blum". Regents of the University of California. Retrieved September 29, 2018.
5. Berkeley Welcomes Dalai Lama. The Daily Californian. April 29, 2009
6. Lederman, Doug (March 3, 2008) "At U. of California, a Systemic Governance Crisis".
7. CounterPunch, February 26, 2010, DiFi and Blum: a Marriage Marinated in Money
8. Blum Biography Archived December 13, 2005, at the Wayback Machine at the University of California
9. "NDI Board of Directors: Richard Blum". National Democratic Institute. Retrieved October 2, 2012.
10. Maclay, Kathleen (April 19, 2006) Blum Center to develop sustainable solutions to issues facing world's poor. University of Berkeley.
11. [Educating Global Learners and Leaders with a Gift of $1.5 Million], University of San Francisco, Ashleigh Hollowell, April 30, 2019. Retrieved August 9, 2019.
12. Inside Philanthropy. Retrieved August 7, 2019.
13. Paddock, Richard C. (March 27, 2007) "Feinstein's husband steps out of her shadow". Los Angeles Times
14. "Windfalls of War". Archived from the original on March 12, 2008. Retrieved December 7, 2008.
15. "Winning Contractors". 2003. Retrieved July 29, 2019.
16. Byrne, Peter (January 24, 2007) Senator Feinstein's Iraq Conflict: Feinstein voted for appropriations worth billions to her husband's firms. North Bay Bohemian.
17. Neubauer, Chuck (April 21, 2009) EXCLUSIVE: Senator's husband's firm cashes in on crisis. In fact, Dianne Feinstein wrote a memo to the FDIC on her Senate letterhead informing the FDIC that they should award the contract to her husband. That contract paid Feinstein's husband for selling and managing each house a foreclosed bank had on file. Those fees paid Blum over $2,000 per month for each property he managed. The couple made hundreds of millions off of this deal and have yet to be brought up on criminal charges.Washington Times
18. Romney, Lee (December 7, 2013). "Berkeley making the rounds to save its historic post office". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on December 9, 2013. Riling many here is the exclusive deal with CBRE Group, whose chairman, Richard Blum, is married to U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.).

External links

• Blum Capital Partners, L.P.
• Blum's Plums: Conflicts of interest benefitted Blum's firms during his term as a UC Regent Peter Byrne, North Bay Bohemian, February 21, 2007.
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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

Postby admin » Mon Nov 25, 2019 3:50 am

Tutor Perini
by Wikipedia
Accessed: 11/24/19



Tutor Perini Corporation
Traded as NYSE: TPC
Russell 2000 Component
Industry construction
Founded 1894
Headquarters Sylmar, California, United States
Key people
Ronald Tutor, CEO
Revenue DecreaseUS$4.76 billion (2017)[1]
Net income
IncreaseUS$154.5 million (2017) [1]
Total assets IncreaseUS$4.26 billion (2017) [1]
Number of employees
10,061[2] (2017)

Tutor Perini Corporation (formerly Perini Corporation) is one of the largest general contractors in the United States. At the end of 2013 it reported an annual revenue of approximately $4.2 billion. Tutor Perini is headquartered in Sylmar, California, and works on many construction projects throughout the United States and Canada. Specific areas of focus are civil infrastructure (bridges, highways, tunnels, airports, mass transit systems), building infrastructure (healthcare, education, municipal government, hospitality and gaming, multi-use, office towers, multi-unit residential towers, high-technology projects), and specialty contracting (electrical, mechanical, plumbing, heating, air conditioning and ventilation (HVAC), fire protection systems, concrete placement).


Albert G. Tutor began the A. G. Tutor Company Inc. in 1949 and the company grew throughout the century under Albert’s son, Ronald Tutor.[3] In 1972 the Tutor Company partnered with N.M. Saliba and became Tutor-Saliba.[3]

Perini Corporation was founded in 1894 in Ashland, Massachusetts by a stonemason named Bonfiglio Perini.[4] Under the direction of Bonfiglio's grandson, Lou Perini, the company moved into the real-estate business, developing 4,500 acres (1,800 ha) in Palm Beach County, Florida. Later real-estate ventures were less successful, leaving Perini deeply in debt by the mid-1990s. In 1997, Ron Tutor helped Perini Corp. recapitalize alongside investor Richard Blum.[5] Tutor became CEO of Perini in 2000 and merged Perini with Tutor-Saliba in 2008.[6]

Perini was listed on the NYSE on April 1, 2004.[7]

Richard Blum divested his Perini stock in 2005.[8]

Perini was headquartered in Framingham, Massachusetts until relocating to Sylmar, California in 2009.[9][10]

In May 2009, Perini shareholders voted to change the company's name to Tutor Perini Corporation.[11][12] Tutor Perini issued $300 million of Senior Notes in October 2010.[13] Tutor Perini proceeded to acquire six companies over the next nine months.


In 2003, Perini acquired Florida-based James A. Cummings.[14] In 2005, the company acquired Cherry Hill Construction, a Maryland-based contractor,[15][16] and California-based Rudolph & Sletten, Inc.[17] In January 2009, the corporation acquired Philadelphia-based building contractor Keating Building Corporation.[18]

November 1, 2010 - Superior Gunite, a structural concrete firm headquartered in Lakeview Terrace, CA.[19]

January 3, 2011 – Fisk Electric, a provider of electrical and technological services headquartered in Houston, TX[20]

April 4, 2011 – Anderson Companies, a general contractor headquartered in Gulfport, MS[21]

June 1, 2011 – Frontier-Kemper Constructors, a provider of numerous construction services including civil construction, mine development, drilling, tunneling, and electrical services headquartered in Evansville, IN[21]

July 1, 2011 – Lunda Construction Company, provider of various construction services such as the construction, rehabilitation, and maintenance of bridges, railroads, and other civil structures headquartered in Black River Falls, WI[19]

July 1, 2011 – GreenStar Services Corporation, an electrical and mechanical services provider that is composed of 3 operating entities: Five Star Electric Corporation, WDF, and Nagelbush[19]

Notable projects

March 17, 2016 - After several smaller contracts at the Hudson Yards, Manhattan site, the company has been awarded contracts worth roughly $1.2 billion for the construction of Tower D and The Shops & Restaurants retail complex at the development.[22]

Corruption Allegations

Tutor Perini has gained a reputation for low balling government contracts only to later increase prices at the expense of the taxpayer, along with other corrupt business practices:

Since 2000 Tutor Perini has costed the state of California $765 million in additional unexpected costs on 11 different projects. This is mostly due to California law which requires the lowest bid to be selected.[23]

In 2002, after an expansion at San Francisco International Airport went over budget by $360 million, City Attorney Dennis Herrera sued Tutor Perini for fraud and attempted to have it banned from bidding on city projects.[24]

In March 2011, after a four-week trial a federal jury in Brooklyn found Zohrab B. Marashlian, the former president of Perini Corp.’s Civil Division, guilty of fraud and conspiracy to launder money. Tutor Perini had paid Marashlian $14 million during the investigation and trial. However Marashlian committed suicide two days before he was to receive a prison sentence. A fellow employee is currently serving time in prison for the same case.[25]

In April 2018, Tutor Perini had deliberately substituted weaker rails than those specified in the San Francisco construction contract, so the city ordered Tutor Perini to rip out much of the steel track it had already laid down. The San Francisco Examiner reported that this is likely to delay the opening of the subway and that Tutor Perini may file additional claims to recoup their costs.[26]

Richard Blum, the husband of California Senator Dianne Feinstein, made large investments in Tutor Perini. Allegations of collusion between Feinstein and Richard Blum assert that Senator Feinstein used her government position to award contracts to companies Richard Blum had invested in which allowed the couple to personally profit from the deals.[27]


• Tutor-Saliba Corporation
• Perini Building Company
• Rudolph and Sletten, Inc.


1. "2017 Annual Report" (PDF). Tutor Perini. 2017. Retrieved 14 November 2018.
2. "Tutor Perini". Fortune. Retrieved 2019-01-14.
3. Jump up to:a b "Ron Tutor: The Lawsuits, Losses and Private Struggles of the Man Behind Miramax". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2018-11-15.
4. "Bonfiglio Perini: The Good Son" (PDF). Retrieved February 1, 2018.
5. Peter J. Howe (2007-05-23). "Cashing in". Globe 100. The Boston Globe. pp. 26–28.
6. "Merger Pays Off Big For Perini CEO | Ron Tutor secures more than $500M". Worcester Business Journal. Retrieved 2018-11-15.
7. "Perini Corporation Annual Report 2004" (PDF).
8. Byrne, Peter. "Blum'e Plums". The Byrne Report. Retrieved 7 August 2017.
9. Ailworth, Erin; Wallack, Todd (2009-10-22). "Tutor Perini moving headquarters to LA". Retrieved 2018-06-20.
10. "Building giant Tutor Perini moves to Sylmar". Daily News. 2009-10-20. Retrieved 2018-06-20.
11. "Perini Shareholders Approve Name Change to Tutor Perini Corporation". Retrieved 2018-06-27.
12. "Perini Gone, Still Synonymous With Consequential Damages | Construction Law Today". Construction Law Today. 2009-06-01. Retrieved 2018-06-27.
13. "Tutor Perini buys Frontier-Kemper, to buy Lunda Construction". Retrieved 2018-06-27.
14. "James A. Cummings purchased for $20M". Retrieved 2018-06-20.
15. Milani, Kate (January 21, 2005). "Cherry Hill Construction bought for $20M". Retrieved 2018-06-20.
16. "Perini Corporation Completes Acquisition of Cherry Hill Construction, Inc". Retrieved 2018-06-20.
17. "Perini Corporation Completes Acquisition of Rudolph and Sletten, Inc". Retrieved 2018-06-20.
18. "CONFIRMED: Keating Building Co. sold to Perini Corp". Retrieved 2018-06-20.
19. "Tutor Perini Corporation Annual Report 2013" (PDF). Retrieved 14 November 2018.
20. "Tutor Perini Acquires Fisk Electric". For Construction Pros. Retrieved 2018-06-27.
21. Jump up to:a b "Tutor Perini Acquires Frontier-Kemper, To Buy Lunda". RTTNews. Retrieved 2018-11-14.
22. "Tutor Perini Wins Whopper of a Contract at NYC's Hudson Yards Project".
23. ... 780385.php
24. ... -bart-muni
25. ... e-1.117958
26. ... new-delay/
27. ... California

External links

• Tutor Perini Corporation
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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

Postby admin » Mon Nov 25, 2019 4:03 am

Seva Foundation
by Wikipedia
Accessed: 11/24/19



Another great Hog Farm adventure set the stage for Wavy's participation in the founding of Seva. Recruited by San Francisco underground radio pioneer Tom Donahue and Warner Brothers Records to travel around the country and be filmed for a movie called Cruising for Burgers, later renamed Medicine Ball Caravan, the Farmers bused themselves across America, setting up stages for mainstream rock and rollers. After one last concert with Pink Floyd in Bishopsbourne, England, the Farmers pooled their movie pay and some funds raised for them from a benefit staged by a London commune and continued their trek across Europe. "It was around the time of the great Pakistani flood," Wavy remembers, "and relief was pouring in so very, very slow. There was a line of Gandhi's that hit me at that time, it was something like, 'If God should appear to starving people, God would not dare to appear in any form other than food.’ We'd had so much attention from that free kitchen at Woodstock, we thought if we were in Pakistan with any kind of food, we could embarrass the large governments, and they would speed up the food relief. Then the Indo-Pakistani war broke out, and we hung a left into K-K-K-Kathmandu, distributing food and medical supplies to Tibetan refugee camps as we traveled. We fixed leaky roofs with rolls of plastic and built a playground in Kathmandu for impoverished kids. We also saw a tremendous number of blind people in Nepal."

With locally run sight programs in India, Nepal, and Tibet, Seva provides more than 80,000 eye surgeries a year.
It also establishes partnership in Native American communities to tackle the rising epidemic of diabetes, supports work for sustainable agriculture in Chiapas, Mexico, and monitors violence against refugees of the Guatemalan civil war. "What we do is find someone who is a blazing, shining example of doing a particular piece of service, and we just back them hook, line, and sinker," Wavy says of Seva’s strategy, "sometimes providing the flashlight to help them find the light switch.

-- A Clown For Our Time, by


Motto Compassion in Action
Formation 1978
Purpose Prevention of blindness.
Headquarters 1786 Fifth Street
Berkeley, California, United States
Region served
Executive Director
Kate Moynihan[1]

Seva Foundation is an international non-profit health organization based in Berkeley, California known for preventing and treating blindness and other visual impairments. It was co-founded in 1978 by Dr. Larry Brilliant, Ram Dass, Wavy Gravy, Nicole Grasset and Govindappa Venkataswamy. Steve Jobs served as an early adviser and major contributor.

Seva works with local communities in more than 20 countries around the world to develop locally-run, culturally appropriate, self-sustaining programs to increase access to eye care. Seva works with local eye health hospitals and clinics in central Asia, southeast Asia, Eastern Europe, Latin America, and throughout sub-Saharan Africa. The foundation also works with Native communities in North America through its American Indian Sight Initiative.


Seva Foundation, based in Berkeley, California, was founded in 1978 by public health expert Larry Brilliant,[2] spiritual leader Ram Dass and humanitarian activist Wavy Gravy.[3] Other co-founders include Dr. Govindappa Venkataswamy, founder of the Aravind Eye Foundation, and Nicole Grasset, the senior adviser for the World Health Organization smallpox eradication campaign.[4][5] Steve Jobs also participated as an adviser at early Seva meetings and provided the first significant cash donation along with an Apple II to enter and analyze eye care survey results in the original Nepal program.[6]

See also

• Himalayan Cataract Project, a similar charity


1. "Staff". Seva Foundation. Retrieved July 31, 2018.
2. Strom, Stephanie (January 29, 2011). "Google Finds It Hard to Reinvent Philanthropy". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved January 4, 2014.
3. "About Seva Foundation". Seva Foundation. Retrieved December 11, 2012.
4. "Celebrating 35 Years of Service: Seva Foundation's history of Compassion in Action". Seva Foundation. Archived from the original on January 6, 2014. Retrieved December 14, 2013.
5. "Programme d' éradication de la variole dans la République de Djibouti : évaluation de la situation actuelle et exécution des activités de surveillance : 6 novembre-30 décembre 1977 / par Nicole Grasset" (in French). World Health Organization. Retrieved December 14, 2013.
6. Wingfield, Nick (November 20, 2013). "A Gift From Steve Jobs Returns Home". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved January 4, 2013.

External links

• Official Website
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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

Postby admin » Mon Nov 25, 2019 4:16 am

Larry Brilliant
by Wikipedia
Accessed: 11/24/19



Larry Brilliant
Born Lawrence Brilliant
May 5, 1944 (age 75)
Detroit, Michigan, United States
Alma mater MPH - University of Michigan
M.D. - Wayne State University School of Medicine
Known for One of the leaders of the successful World Health Organization (WHO) smallpox eradication program.
Spouse(s) Girija Brilliant
Joe Brilliant
Jon Brilliant
Iris Brilliant
Scientific career
Fields Epidemiology

Lawrence "Larry" Brilliant (born May 5, 1944) is an American epidemiologist, technologist, philanthropist, and author of "Sometimes Brilliant."

Brilliant, a technology patent holder, has been the CEO of public companies and venture backed start-ups. He was the inaugural Executive Director of,[1] the charitable arm of Google established in 2005, and the first CEO of Skoll Global Threats Fund, established in 2009 by eBay founder Jeff Skoll to address climate change, pandemics, water security, nuclear proliferation, and conflict in the Middle East. Brilliant currently serves as the Chairman of the Board of Ending Pandemics, and is also on the boards of the Skoll Foundation,, The Seva Foundation, and Dharma Platform.

Dharma Platform was founded in 2015 by statistician Jesse Berns and data scientist Michael Roytman. During their time working for the United Nations in Iraq, they witnessed first-hand the challenges and setbacks that come with data collection and management. Rather than responding to outbreaks, much of their time was spent cleaning spreadsheets, making pivot tables and hiring consultants.

They created Dharma Platform to give people the tools they need to collect, manage and translate data—freeing up valuable time for what matters most.

-- About Us, by Dharma Platform

From 1973 to 1976, Brilliant participated in the successful World Health Organization (WHO) smallpox eradication program.

Early life

Born in Detroit, Michigan, Brilliant received his undergraduate training as well as his MPH degree (Masters in Public Health) from the University of Michigan, where he worked on the staff of the Gargoyle Humor Magazine, and his M.D. from Wayne State University School of Medicine. He moved to California for his internship at the California Pacific Medical Center, and developed parathyroid cancer from which he recovered. Brilliant is board certified in preventive medicine and public health.

In 1969, a group of American Indians from many different tribes, calling themselves Indians of All Tribes, occupied the Alcatraz island in San Francisco. A call went out for doctors to help a pregnant woman there give birth and Brilliant joined their occupation as unofficial doctor. The Indians on Alcatraz named the baby "Wovoka" after a Northern Paiute medicine man.[2]


Brilliant in 2015

After the US government forced the Indians of All Tribes off Alcatraz, Brilliant became a media darling which led to a movie company casting him in Medicine Ball Caravan—a sequel to the hit Woodstock Nation—playing a doctor in a film about a tribe of hippies who follow the Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane, Jethro Tull, and Joni Mitchell.[3] The cast was paid with airline tickets to India. Brilliant and some others cashed their tickets in and rented a bus to drive around Europe, which then turned into a relief convoy to help victims of the 1970 Bhola cyclone in Bangladesh (then East Pakistan).

Civil unrest stopped the relief caravan so he spent several years in India studying at a Himalayan ashram with Neem Karoli Baba (a Hindu sage) from whom he received the name Subramanyum. After about a year Neem Karoli Baba advised Brilliant to eradicate smallpox, a project on which he would spend the next several years. He participated, as a medical officer, in the World Health Organization (WHO) smallpox eradication program that in 1980 certified the global eradication of smallpox.[4] Brilliant found that Indian officials became more receptive to his efforts when they learned of Neem Karoli Baba's involvement, to which he credits a significant portion of the program's success.[5] Brilliant contributed a seven-page account of his experiences to the book Miracle of Love: Stories of Neem Karoli Baba.[5]

In December 1978, he became a co-founder and chairman of Seva Foundation, an international, non-profit, health foundation. Seva's projects in places like Tibet, Nepal, India, Bangladesh, Cambodia, Tanzania, Ethiopia, and Guatemala have given back sight to more than 3 million blind people through surgery, self-sufficient eye care systems, and low cost manufacturing of intraocular lenses. One important contribution of his was his helping to set up the Aravind Eye Hospital in Madurai, India.

When he returned to the United States, he became a professor of international health at the University of Michigan as well as starting numerous charitable and business ventures.

In 1985, he co-founded, with Stewart Brand, The Well, a prototypic online community that has been the subject of multiple books and studies. Time magazine said, "Well was a huge hit, a precursor of every online business from to eBay."[6]

He spent the first half of 2005 as a volunteer helping out in the tsunami in Sri Lanka and working in India with WHO in the campaign to eradicate polio.

On February 22, 2006, Google Inc. appointed him as the Executive Director of, the philanthropic arm of Google,[7] a position which he held until April, 2009,[8] when he joined the Skoll Foundation, as its President, the philanthropic organization established by former eBay president Jeff Skoll.[9]

In July 2006, he was awarded the TED Prize, granting him $100,000 and 'One Wish to Change the World'[10] which he presented at TED in July 2006. As his prize nominator summed up, "'Dr. Brilliant' is a name to live up to, and he has."[11] His one wish that he presented at the conference was, "To build a powerful new early warning system to protect our world from some of its worst nightmares."[12]

In May 2013, he gave the commencement speech at Harvard School of Public Health,

On Nov. 5, 1962, the Reverend Martin Luther King visited the University of Michigan. It was a dramatic time. The world teetered on the brink of nuclear madness during the Cuban Missile Crisis. Federal troops were on patrol after the first black student was admitted to Ole Miss.


He said that "the arc of moral universe is long, but it bends towards justice".


Here is what I ask of you: Imagine that arc of history that Martin Luther King inspired is right here with us. The arc of the universe needs your help to bend it towards justice. It will not happen on its own. The arc of history will not bend towards justice without you bending it. Public health needs you to insure health for all. Seize that history. Bend that arc. I want you to leap up, to jump up and grab that arc of history with both hands, and yank it down, twist it, and bend it. Bend it towards fairness, bend it towards better health for all, bend it towards justice![13]

Personal life

Brilliant is married to Girija (formerly Elaine) and has three children: Joe, Jon, and Iris Brilliant. Girija holds a PhD in public health administration and is an equal partner in many of her husband's enterprises. Co-founder of Seva Foundation,[14] she was instrumental in the World Health Organization's smallpox eradication program.


Brilliant has worked on numerous films including Contagion, Unseen Enemies, the award winning HBO film Open Your Eyes (as producer), Saint Mis’Behaving (about his friend, the clown, Wavy Gravy), Fierce Grace, the CNN film Unseen Enemy, Medicine Ball Caravan, Hare Rama Hare Krishna, and Oscar nominated The Final Inch.

Brilliant also acted as an extra in the 1971 Bollywood movie Hare Rama Hare Krishna, which depicts hippie culture. He said, "When shooting for the song sequence 'Dum Maro Dum' (which glorifies smoking marijuana), Dev Anand was looking for certain types of foreigners..."[15] Brilliant is a featured interviewee in the 2009 feature-length documentary, Saint Misbehavin': The Wavy Gravy Movie, as the social activist's real-life physician.


• Sometimes Brilliant, HarperOne[16]
• Brilliant, Larry (1995). "Were you talking to God?". In Ram Dass (ed.). Miracle of Love: Stories about Neem Karoli Baba (3rd ed.). Hanuman Foundation. ISBN 1887474005.
• Girija E. Brilliant and Lawrence B. Brilliant: Himalayan Numismatics, Chelsea, Michigan, Spring 1983.


1. Goodell, Jeff (April 2008). "The Guru of Google". Rolling Stone.
2. Hoge, Patrick (24 February 2006). "Larry Brilliant: Doctor Looks to Use Technology to Aid Global Health Care". Wall Street Journal. Archived from the original on 1 November 2007. Retrieved 2007-07-26.
3. Harriet Rubin (2000). "Dr. Brilliant Vs. the Devil of Ambition". Archived from the original on 2007-09-27. Retrieved 2007-07-26.
4. "Smallpox". WHO. 2000. Archived from the original on 2007-09-21. Retrieved 2007-07-26.
5. Jump up to:a b Ram Dass (1995). Miracle of Love: Stories about Neem Karoli Baba. Hanuman Foundation. 4th ed., Chapter 9: The Stick That Heals, pp. 155-161. ISBN 978-1-887474-00-9.
6. Taylor, Chris (April 21, 2003). "Will You Buy WiFi?". TIME. Retrieved 2007-07-26.
7. Hafner, Katie (September 14, 2006). "Philanthropy Google's Way: Not the Usual". NY Times. Retrieved 2007-07-25.
8. Dr. Larry Brilliant (April 14, 2009). "Brilliant Takes on Urgent Threats". Google. Retrieved 2009-06-25.
9. "Google loses Brilliant to rival foundation". The Guardian. 15 April 2009.
10. Zetter, Kim (2006-02-23). "Brilliant's Wish: Disease Alerts". Retrieved 2007-08-01.
11. "Larry Brilliant: TED Prize wish: Help stop the next pandemic" (Streaming Video). TED (conference). July 2006. Retrieved 2007-07-25.
12. Bruno Giussani (March 23, 2006). "Larry Brilliant: Can the Internet help stop pandemics?". LunchoverIP. Retrieved 2007-07-25.
13. "" HSPH News " Commencement 2013: Larry Brilliant's address". Harvard School of Public Health. May 30, 2013. Retrieved 2013-11-22.
14. Seva Foundation: History Archived 2014-01-06 at the Wayback Machine
15. "Executive Director of Google praising the Ramayana and Mahabharata!". 2008-05-21. Archived from the originalon 2007-10-25.
16. [1]

External links

• Are Social Entrepreneurs Heroes? Larry Brilliant on BBC The Forum
• Larry Brilliant on Twitter
• Seva Foundation (Co-Founder)
• Larry Brilliant, President, Skoll Global Threats Fund, Profile at Skoll Foundation
• Larry Brilliant at TED
o TED Prize Wish: Larry Brilliant wants to stop pandemics, a TED talk (TED2006)
o Larry Brilliant makes the case for optimism, a TED talk (Skoll World Forum 2007)
Site Admin
Posts: 32942
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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

Postby admin » Mon Nov 25, 2019 4:31 am

Neem Karoli Baba
by Wikipedia
Accessed: 11/24/19



Neem Karoli Baba
Born Lakshmi Narayan Sharma
1900 c.[1]
Akbarpur, United Provinces, British India
(now in Firozabad district, Uttar Pradesh, India)
Died 11 September 1973 (aged 73)
Vrindavan, Uttar Pradesh, India
Religion Hinduism
Nationality Indian
Philosophy Bhakti yoga, Sewa
Religious career
Guru Hanuman
Disciples: Bhagavan Das, Jai Uttal, Krishna Das, Ram Dass, Ram Rani, Surya Das

Neem Karoli Baba sculpture in Ram Dass library

Neem Karoli Baba (Hindi: नीम करौली बाबा[2]) or Neeb Karori Baba (Hindi: नीब करौरी बाबा) (c. 1900 - 11 September 1973) - known to his followers as Maharaj-ji - was a Hindu guru, mystic and devotee of the Hindu lord Hanuman.[3] He is known outside India for being the guru of a number of Americans who travelled to India in the 1960s and 1970s, the most well-known being the spiritual teachers Ram Dass and Bhagavan Das, and the musicians Krishna Das and Jai Uttal. His ashrams are in Kainchi,[4] Vrindavan, Rishikesh, Shimla, Neem Karoli village near Khimasepur in Farrukhabad, Bhumiadhar, Hanumangarhi, Lucknow, Delhi in India and in Taos, New Mexico, USA.


Early years

Born around 1900, in village Akbarpur, Firozabad district, Uttar Pradesh, India, in a Brahmin family of Durga Prasad Sharma.[1] After marrying young at 11, Neem Karoli Baba became a wandering sadhu. He later returned home, at his father's request, to marry. He fathered two sons and a daughter.[5]

As Maharaj-ji

Neem Karoli Baba or Baba Lakshman Das (also spelled "Laxman Das"), as he was known then, left his home in 1958. Ram Dass tells an unverified story that Baba Lakshman Das boarded a train without a ticket and the conductor decided to halt the train and force Neem Karoli Baba off of the train at the village of Neeb Karori, Farrukhabad district (U.P). After boarding Baba off the train, the conductor found that the train would not start again. After several attempts at starting the train someone suggested to the conductor that they allow the sadhu back on to the train. Neem Karoli agreed to board the train on two conditions that the railway company promise to build a station at the village of Neeb Karori (at the time the villagers had to walk many miles to the nearest station), and the railway company must henceforth treat sadhus better. The officials agreed and Neem Karoli Baba boarded the train, jokingly saying, "What, is it up to me to start trains?" Immediately after his boarding the train, it started, but the train drivers would not proceed unless the sadhu blessed them to move forward. Baba gave his blessings and the train proceeded. Later a train station was built at the village of Neeb Karori.[6] Baba lived in the village of Neeb Karori for a while and was given his name by locals.

Thereafter he wandered extensively throughout Northern India. During this time he was known under many names including Lakshman Das, Handi Wallah Baba, and Tikonia Walla Baba. When he did tapasya and sadhana at Vavania Morbi in Gujarat, he was known as Tallaiya Baba. In Vrindavan, local inhabitants addressed him by the name of Chamatkari Baba ("miracle baba").[6] During his life two main ashrams were built, first at Vrindavan and later at Kainchi, where he spent the summer months.[1] In time, over 100 temples were constructed in his name.[1]

The Kainchi Dham ashram where he stayed in the last decade of his life, was built in 1964 with a Hanuman temple. It started two years prior with a modest platform built for two local shadhus,[what language is this?] Premi Baba and Sombari Maharaj to perform yagnas. Over the years the temple, situated 17 km from Nainital on the Nainital-Almora road, has become an important pilgrimage for locals, especially on 15 June, when then the Kainchi Dham Bhandara takes place to commemorate the inauguration of the temple, when it is visited by over a lakh of devotees.[7][8][9]


Neem Karoli Baba, samadhi mandir, Vrindavan ashram.

Neem Karoli Baba (Maharaj ji) died at approximately 1:15 a.m. in the early morning hours of 11 September 1973 in a hospital at Vrindavan, India after slipping into a diabetic coma. He had been returning by night train to Kainchi near Nainital, from Agra where he had visited a heart specialist due to experiencing pains in his chest. He and his traveling companions had disembarked at Mathura railway station where he began convulsing and requested being taken to Shri Dham Vrindavan.

They took him to the emergency room at the hospital. In the hospital the doctor gave him injections and placed an oxygen mask over his face. The hospital staff said that he was in a diabetic coma but that his pulse was fine. Maharajji roused and pulled the oxygen mask off his face and the blood pressure measuring band from his arm, saying, “Bekar (useless).” Maharajji asked for Ganga water. As there was none, they brought him regular water. He then repeated several times, “Jaya Jagadish Hare” (Hail to the Lord of the Universe),” each time in a lower pitch. His face became very peaceful, all signs of pain disappeared. He was dead.[10]

Subsequently, his samadhi shrine was built within the complex of Vrindavan ashram, which also has some of his personal belongings.


He was a lifelong adept of bhakti yoga, and encouraged service to others (seva) as the highest form of unconditional devotion to God. In the book Miracle of Love, compiled by Ram Dass, a devotee named Anjani shares the following account:

There can be no biography of him. Facts are few, stories many. He seems to have been known by different names in many parts of India, appearing and disappearing through the years. His non-Indian devotees of recent years knew him as Neem Karoli Baba, but mostly as “Maharajji” – a nickname so commonplace in India that one can often hear a tea vendor addressed thus. Just as he said, he was "nobody". He gave no discourses; the briefest, simplest stories were his teachings. Usually he sat or lay on a wooden bench wrapped in a plaid blanket while a few devotees sat around him. Visitors came and went; they were given food, a few words, a nod, a pat on the head or back, and they were sent away. There was gossip and laughter for he loved to joke. Orders for running the ashram were given, usually in a piercing yell across the compound. Sometimes he sat in silence, absorbed in another world to which we could not follow, but bliss and peace poured down on us. Who he was was no more than the experience of him, the nectar of his presence, the totality of his absence, enveloping us now like his plaid blanket.[10]

Notable disciples

Kainchi Dham Ashram near Nainital.

Among the most well known of Neem Karoli Baba's disciples were spiritual teacher Ram Dass (the author of Be Here Now), teacher/performer Bhagavan Das, Lama Surya Das[11] and the musicians Jai Uttal and Krishna Das and Trevor Hall (Rampriya Das). Other notable devotees include humanitarian Larry Brilliant and his wife Girija, Dada Mukerjee (former professor at Allahabad University, Uttar Pradesh, India), scholar and writer Yvette Rosser, John Bush filmmaker, and Daniel Goleman author of The Varieties of the Meditative Experience and Emotional Intelligence.[12] Baba Hari Dass (Haridas) was not a disciple,[13] however, he supervised several buildings and maintained the ashrams[14] in Nainital area (1954-1968) before heading to the USA to become a spiritual teacher in California in the beginning of 1971.

Steve Jobs, along with his friend Dan Kottke, traveled to India in April 1974 to study Hinduism and Indian spirituality; they planned also to meet Neem Karoli Baba,[15] but arrived to find the guru had died the previous September.[16] Hollywood actress[17] Julia Roberts was also influenced by Neem Karoli Baba. A picture of him drew Roberts to Hinduism.[18] Mark Zuckerberg, founder of facebook, influenced by Steve Jobs, visited Neem Karoli Baba's (Maharajji) ashram in Kainchi. Larry Brilliant took Google’s Larry Page and Jeffrey Skoll, co-founder of eBay, on the pilgrimage.[19]


After returning to the United States, Ram Dass and Larry Brilliant founded the Seva Foundation, an international health organization based in Berkeley, California. Steve Jobs, a friend of Brilliant, also funded the organization.[20] It is committed to applying the teachings of Neem Karoli Baba toward ending world poverty.

In the late 2000s another Foundation evolved, the 'Love Serve Remember Foundation', whose purpose is to preserve and continue the teachings of Neem Karoli Baba.[21]


• Sab Ek (All One)[22]
• Love everyone, Serve Everyone, Feed Everyone, Remember God. [23]
• Meditate like Christ. He lost himself in love [24]


1. Constance Jones; James D. Ryan (2006). Encyclopedia of Hinduism. Infobase Publishing. p. 310. ISBN 978-0-8160-7564-5.
2. "सुर्खियों में आया बाबा नीम करौली का आश्रम". Dainik Bhaskar (in Hindi). 1 October 2015. Retrieved 4 October 2015.
3. Swami Chidananda. "Baba Neem Karoli: A Wonder Mystic of Northern India". Divine Life Society. Retrieved 4 October 2015.
4. 29.4220°N 79.5125°E Kainchi Dham
5. "10 facts to know about Neem Karoli Baba". 1 October 2015.
6. Ram Dass (1995). Miracle of Love: Stories about Neem Karoli Baba. Hanuman Foundation. ISBN 1-887474-00-5.
7. "Devotees throng Kainchi Dham fair". The Times of India. 15 June 2015. Retrieved 1 October 2015.
8. "10 facts to know about Neem Karoli Baba". India TV News. 1 October 2015. Retrieved 1 October 2015.
9. "One 'Mark' who stayed two nights". The Telegraph. 30 September 2015. Retrieved 1 October 2015.
10. Ram Dass (1995). Miracle of Love: Stories about Neem Karoli Baba. Hanuman Foundation. ISBN 1-887474-00-5[1]
11. Das, Surya (1998). Awakening the Buddha Within: Tibetan Wisdom for the Western World. Broadway. p. 41. ISBN 0-7679-0157-6.
12. "Krishna Das : Songwriter Interviews". Song facts. Retrieved 1 October 2015.
13. Jones, Constance A.; D. Ryan, James (2007). Encyclopedia of Hinduism. New York: Infobase Publishing. pp. Baba Hari Dass. ISBN 978-0-8160-5458-9.
14. Mukerjee, Sudhir Dada (2012) [1996]. The Near and The Dear. Santa Fe, NM: Hanuman Foundation. pp. 221–2. ISBN 1-887474-02-1.
15. "Steve Jobs, a Hindu holy man, and the Apple logo".
16. "Sought 'enlightenment' in India". The Times of India. 6 October 2011. Retrieved 5 April 2012.
17. "Steve Jobs, a Hindu holy man, and the Apple logo". 4 April 2013.
18. "Julia Roberts' Journey in 'Eat Pray Love'". ABC News. 9 August 2010. Retrieved 6 October 2010.
19. Gowen, Annie (31 October 2015). "Inside the Indian temple that draws America's tech titans" – via
20. Anthony Imbimbo (2009). Steve Jobs: The Brilliant Mind Behind Apple. Gareth Stevens. p. 43. ISBN 978-1-4339-0060-0.
21. "Love Serve Remember Foundation - Ram Dass". Retrieved 6 October 2015.
22. Das, Krishna (15 February 2010). Chants of a Lifetime. Hay House, Inc. ISBN 9781401927714.
23. Doval, Nikita (29 September 2015). "Mark Zuckerberg's temple run, courtesy Steve Jobs". Livemint. Retrieved 15 October 2015.
24. "Meditate Like Christ | Neem Karoli Baba Ashram". 4 November 2018. Retrieved 2 November2019.


• Bhagavan Das (1997). It's Here Now (Are You?). Broadway. ISBN 0-7679-0009-X.
• Hanuman Foundation (1980). Neem Karoli Baba. Hanuman Foundation.
• Keshav Das, ed. (2011). Barefoot in the Heart: Remembering Neem Karoli Baba. Sensitive Skin Books. ISBN 978-0-9839271-2-9.
• Krishna Das (2010). Chants of a Lifetime: Searching for a Heart of Gold. Hay House, Inc. ISBN 978-1-4019-2022-7.
• Markus, Parvati. Love Everyone: The Transcendent Wisdom of Neem Karoli Baba and His Devotees. Hanuman Foundation. ISBN 1-887474-02-1.
• Pande, Ravi Prakash (2015). Divine Reality: Shri Baba Neem Karoli Baba. HarperOne. ISBN 0062342991.
• Mukerjee, Dada (2001). By His Grace: A Devotee's Story. Hanuman Foundation. ISBN 0-9628878-7-0.
• Mukerjee, Dada (2001). The Near and the Dear: Stories Neeb Karori Ji Maharaj. Shri Kainchi Hanuman Mandir Ashram.
• Ram Dass (1971). Be Here Now. Three Rivers Press. ISBN 0-517-54305-2.
• Ram Dass (1995). Miracle of Love: Stories about Neem Karoli Baba. Hanuman Foundation. ISBN 1887474005.
• Ransom, Jai Ram (2014). It All Abides in Love: Maharaji Neem Karoli Baba. Taos Music and Art, Inc. ISBN 9780990718222.

External links

• Official website of the Neem Karoli Baba Ashram, Taos, New Mexico
• Neeb Karori Baba Manav Seva Samiti website
• Neem Karoli Baba at Curlie
• Archived Neen Karoli Baba site
Site Admin
Posts: 32942
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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

Postby admin » Mon Nov 25, 2019 7:33 am

Tibet Autonomous Region
by Wikipedia
Accessed: 11/25/19



Tibet Autonomous Region
Xizang Autonomous Region
Tibetan: བོད་རང་སྐྱོང་ལྗོངས།
Chinese: 西藏自治区
Autonomous region
Chinese transcription(s)
• Chinese characters 西藏自治区
(abbreviation: XZ / 藏)
• Pinyin Xīzàng Zìzhìqū
(abbreviation: Zàng)
Tibetan transcription(s)
• Tibetan script བོད་རང་སྐྱོང་ལྗོངས།
• Wylie transliteration bod rang skyong ljongs
• official transcription (PRC) Poi Ranggyong Jong
Bridge over the Lhasa river
Map showing the location of the Tibet Autonomous Region
Named for བོད་ (Bö) is the Tibetan name of the Greater Tibet region.
西藏 (Xīzàng) means "Western Tsang", from Manchu "wargi Dzang", from Tibetan Ü-Tsang. Ü and Tsang are subregions of Greater Tibet.
"Tibet" is from the word Tibat of disputed origin.
Capital (and largest city) Lhasa
Divisions 5 prefecture-level cities, 2 prefectures, 6 districts, 68 counties, 692 townships
• Party Secretary Wu Yingjie
• Chairman Che Dalha
• Total 1,228,400 km2 (474,300 sq mi)
Area rank 2nd
Highest elevation (Mount Everest) 8,848 m (29,029 ft)
Population (December 2014)[2]
• Total 3,180,000
• Rank 32nd
• Density 2.59/km2 (6.7/sq mi)
• Density rank 33rd
• Ethnic composition 90% Tibetan
8% Han
0.3% Monpa
0.3% Hui
0.2% others
• Languages and dialects Tibetan, Mandarin Chinese
ISO 3166 code CN-XZ
GDP (2017) CNY 131 billion
USD 20 billion (31st) [3]
- per capita CNY 39,258
USD 5,814 (28th)
HDI (2017) Increase 0.589[4]
medium · 31st

The Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR) or Xizang Autonomous Region, called Tibet or Xizang for short (Chinese: 西藏; pinyin: Xīzàng; Mandarin pronunciation: [ɕí.tsâŋ]; literally: 'Western Tsang'; Tibetan: བོད་, Wylie: Bod, ZYPY: Poi, Tibetan pronunciation: [pʰø̀ʔ]), is a province-level autonomous region in southwest China. It was formally established in 1965 to replace the Tibet Area, an administrative division the People's Republic of China (PRC) took over from the Republic of China (ROC) about five years after the dismissal of the Kashag by the PRC following the 1959 Tibetan uprising, and about 13 years after Tibet's incorporation into the PRC in 1951.

The current borders of the Tibet Autonomous Region were generally established in the 18th century[5] and include about half of ethno-cultural Tibet. The Tibet Autonomous Region is the second-largest province-level division of China by area, spanning over 1,200,000 km2 (460,000 sq mi), after Xinjiang, and mostly due to its harsh and rugged terrain, is the least densely populated provincial-level division of the PRC.


Main article: History of Tibet

There is a politically-charged historical debate on the exact nature of relations between Tibet and the Chinese Ming dynasty (1368–1644) and whether the Ming Dynasty had sovereignty over Tibet[6][7][8] after the Mongol conquest of Tibet and Yuan administrative rule in the 13th and 14th centuries. Qing dynasty (1636–1912) rule in Tibet began with their 1720 expedition to the country when they expelled the invading Dzungars, and Tibet was actually first controlled by central government. From 1912 to 1950 Tibet was under de jure suzerainty of the Republic of China, however, the difficulties of establishing a new government in the aftermath of the Xinhai Revolution, the fractious Warlord Era, the Chinese Civil War, and the overwhelming Japanese invasion and occupation before and during World War II left the Republic unable to exert any effective administration. Other parts of ethno-cultural Tibet (eastern Kham and Amdo) had been under de jure administration of the Chinese dynastic government since the mid-18th century;[9] today they are distributed among the provinces of Qinghai, Gansu, Sichuan and Yunnan. (See also: Xikang province)

In 1950, the People's Liberation Army marched into Tibet and defeated the Tibetan local army in a battle fought near the city of Chamdo. In 1951, the Tibetan representatives signed a 17-point agreement with the Central People's Government affirming China's sovereignty over Tibet and the incorporation of Tibet. The agreement was ratified in Lhasa a few months later.[10][11] Although the 17-point agreement had provided for an autonomous administration led by the Dalai Lama, a "Preparatory Committee for the Autonomous Region of Tibet" (PCART) was established in 1955 to exclude the Dalai Lama's government and create a system of administration along Communist lines. Under threat of his life from Chinese forces the Dalai Lama fled to India in 1959 and renounced the 17-point agreement. Tibet Autonomous Region was established in 1965, thus making Tibet a provincial-level division of China.


Main article: Geography of Tibet

The Tibet Autonomous Region is located on the Tibetan Plateau, the highest region on earth. In northern Tibet elevations reach an average of over 4,572 metres (15,000 ft). Mount Everest is located on Tibet's border with Nepal.

China's provincial-level areas of Xinjiang, Qinghai and Sichuan lie to the north, northeast, and east, respectively, of the Tibet AR. There is also a short border with Yunnan province to the southeast. Tibet Autonomous Region contains South Tibet, which is administered by India as part of Arunachal Pradesh. Tibet Autonomous Region also contains Doklam which is in dispute with Bhutan. The other countries to the south are Myanmar (Kachin State), Bhutan (Gasa, Lhuntse Thimphu, Trashiyangtse and Wangdue Phodrang Districts) and Nepal (Far-Western, Mid-Western, Western, Central, and Eastern Regions).

Mount Everest

Physically, the Tibet AR may be divided into two parts, the lakes region in the west and north-west, and the river region, which spreads out on three sides of the former on the east, south, and west. Both regions receive limited amounts of rainfall as they lie in the rain shadow of the Himalayas, however the region names are useful in contrasting their hydrological structures, and also in contrasting their different cultural uses which is nomadic in the lake region and agricultural in the river region.[12] On the south the Tibet AR is bounded by the Himalayas, and on the north by a broad mountain system. The system at no point narrows to a single range; generally there are three or four across its breadth. As a whole the system forms the watershed between rivers flowing to the Indian Ocean − the Indus, Brahmaputra and Salween and its tributaries − and the streams flowing into the undrained salt lakes to the north.

The lake region extends from the Pangong Tso Lake in Ladakh, Lake Rakshastal, Yamdrok Lake and Lake Manasarovar near the source of the Indus River, to the sources of the Salween, the Mekong and the Yangtze. Other lakes include Dagze Co, Namtso, and Pagsum Co. The lake region is a wind-swept Alpine grassland. This region is called the Chang Tang (Byang sang) or 'Northern Plateau' by the people of Tibet. It is some 1,100 km (680 mi) broad, and covers an area about equal to that of France. Due to its great distance from the ocean it is extremely arid and possesses no river outlet. The mountain ranges are spread out, rounded, disconnected, separated by relatively flat valleys.

The Tibet AR is dotted over with large and small lakes, generally salt or alkaline, and intersected by streams. Due to the presence of discontinuous permafrost over the Chang Tang, the soil is boggy and covered with tussocks of grass, thus resembling the Siberian tundra. Salt and fresh-water lakes are intermingled. The lakes are generally without outlet, or have only a small effluent. The deposits consist of soda, potash, borax and common salt. The lake region is noted for a vast number of hot springs, which are widely distributed between the Himalaya and 34° N, but are most numerous to the west of Tengri Nor (north-west of Lhasa). So intense is the cold in this part of Tibet that these springs are sometimes represented by columns of ice, the nearly boiling water having frozen in the act of ejection.

The river region is characterised by fertile mountain valleys and includes the Yarlung Tsangpo River (the upper courses of the Brahmaputra) and its major tributary, the Nyang River, the Salween, the Yangtze, the Mekong, and the Yellow River. The Yarlung Tsangpo Canyon, formed by a horseshoe bend in the river where it flows around Namcha Barwa, is the deepest, and possibly longest canyon in the world.[13] Among the mountains there are many narrow valleys. The valleys of Lhasa, Xigazê, Gyantse and the Brahmaputra are free from permafrost, covered with good soil and groves of trees, well irrigated, and richly cultivated.

The South Tibet Valley is formed by the Yarlung Tsangpo River during its middle reaches, where it travels from west to east. The valley is approximately 1200 kilometres long and 300 kilometres wide. The valley descends from 4500 metres above sea level to 2800 metres. The mountains on either side of the valley are usually around 5000 metres high.[14][15] Lakes here include Lake Paiku and Lake Puma Yumco.


See also: List of modern political leaders of Tibet and List of current Chinese provincial leaders

The Tibet Autonomous Region is a province-level entity of the People's Republic of China. Chinese law nominally guarantees some autonomy in the areas of education and language policy. Like other subdivisions of China, routine administration is carried out by a People's Government, headed by a Chairman, who has been an ethnic Tibetan except for an interregnum during the Cultural Revolution. As with other Chinese provinces, the Chairman carries out work under the direction of the regional secretary of the Communist Party of China. The regional standing committee of the Communist Party serves as the top rung of political power in the region. The current Chairman is Che Dalha and the current party secretary is Wu Yingjie.[16]

Administrative divisions

For a more comprehensive list, see List of administrative divisions of the Tibet Autonomous Region and List of township-level divisions of the Tibet Autonomous Region.

The Autonomous Region is divided into seven prefecture-level divisions: six prefecture-level cities and one prefecture.

These in turn are subdivided into a total of 66 counties and 8 districts (Chengguan, Doilungdêqên, Dagzê, Samzhubzê, Karub, Bayi, Nêdong, and Seni).

Administrative divisions of Tibet Autonomous Region


№ / Division code[17] / Division / Area in km2[18] / Population 2010[19] / Seat / Divisions[20]
Districts Counties
-- / 540000 / Tibet Autonomous Region / 1,228,400.00 / 3,002,166 / Lhasa city / 8 / 66
5 / 540100 / Lhasa city / 29,538.90 / 559,423 / Chengguan District / 3 / 5
4 / 540200 / Shigatse / Xigazê city / 182,066.26 / 703,292 / Samzhubzê District / 1 / 17
3 / 540300 / Chamdo / Qamdo city / 108,872.30 / 657,505 / Karuo District / 1 / 10
7 / 540400 / Nyingchi city / 113,964.79 / 195,109 / Bayi District / 1 / 6
6 / 540500 / Shannan / Lhoka city / 79,287.84 / 328,990 / Nêdong District / 1 / 11
2 / 540600 / Nagqu city / 391,816.63 / 462,382 / Seni District / 1 / 10
1 / 542500 / Ngari Prefecture / 296,822.62 / 95,465 / Gar County / -- / 7

Yamdrok Lake

Namtso Lake

Administrative divisions in Tibetan, Chinese, and varieties of romanizations

Urban areas

Population by urban areas of prefecture & county cities

# / City / Urban area[21] / District area[21] / City proper[21] / Census date
1 / Lhasa[a] / 199,159 / 279,074 / 559,423 / 2010-11-01
(1) / Lhasa (new districts)[a] / 21,093 / 78,957 / see Lhasa / 2010-11-01
2 / Xigazê[ b] / 63,967 / 120,374 / 703,292 / 2010-11-01
(3) / Qamdo[c] / 44,028 / 116,500 / 657,505 / 2010-11-01
(4) / Nagqu[d] / 42,984 / 108,781 / 462,381 / 2010-11-01
(5) / Nyingchi[e] / 35,179 / 54,702 / 195,109 / 2010-11-01
(6) / Shannan[f] / 30,646 / 59,615 / 328,990 / 2010-11-01

1. New districts established after census: Doilungdêqên (Doilungdêqên County), Dagzê (Dagzê County). These new districts not included in the urban area & district area count of the pre-expanded city.
2. Xigazê Prefecture is currently known as Xigazê PLC after census; Xigazê CLC is currently known as Samzhubzê after census.
3. Qamdo Prefecture is currently known as Qamdo PLC after census; Qamdo County is currently known as Karuo after census.
4. Nagqu Prefecture is currently known as Nagqu PLC after census; Nagqu County is currently known as Seni after census.
5. Nyingchi Prefecture is currently known as Nyingchi PLC after census; Nyingchi County is currently known as Bayi after census.
6. Shannan Prefecture is currently known as Shannan PLC after census; Nêdong County is currently known as Nêdong after census.


Historical population

Year / Pop. / ±%
1912[22] / 1,160,000 / —
1928[23] / 372,000 / −67.9%
1936–37[24] / 372,000 / +0.0%
1947[25] / 1,000,000 / +168.8%
1954[26] / 1,273,969 / +27.4%
1964[27] / 1,251,225 / −1.8%
1982[28] / 1,892,393 / +51.2%
1990[29] / 2,196,010 / +16.0%
2000[30] / 2,616,329 / +19.1%
2010[31] / 3,002,166 / +14.7%

Xikang Province / Chuanbian SAR was established in 1923 from parts of Tibet / Lifan Yuan; dissolved in 1955 and parts were incorporated into Tibet AR.

With an average of only two people per square kilometer, Tibet has the lowest population density among any of the Chinese province-level administrative regions, mostly due to its harsh and rugged terrain.[32]

In 2011 the Tibetan population was three million.[33] The ethnic Tibetans, comprising 90.48% of the population,[34] mainly adhere to Tibetan Buddhism and Bön, although there is an ethnic Tibetan Muslim community.[35] Other Muslim ethnic groups such as the Hui and the Salar have inhabited the Region. There is also a tiny Tibetan Christian community in eastern Tibet. Smaller tribal groups such as the Monpa and Lhoba, who follow a combination of Tibetan Buddhism and spirit worship, are found mainly in the southeastern parts of the region.

Historically, the population of Tibet consisted of primarily ethnic Tibetans. According to tradition the original ancestors of the Tibetan people, as represented by the six red bands in the Tibetan flag, are: the Se, Mu, Dong, Tong, Dru and Ra. Other traditional ethnic groups with significant population or with the majority of the ethnic group reside in Tibet include Bai people, Blang, Bonan, Dongxiang, Han, Hui people, Lhoba, Lisu people, Miao, Mongols, Monguor (Tu people), Menba (Monpa), Mosuo, Nakhi, Qiang, Nu people, Pumi, Salar, and Yi people.

According to Encyclopædia Britannica Eleventh Edition published between 1910–1911, total population of Tibetan capital of Lhasa, including the lamas in the city and vicinity, was about 30,000, and the permanent population also included Chinese families (about 2,000).[36]

Most Han people in the TAR (8.17% of the total population)[34] are recent migrants, because all of the Han were expelled from "Outer Tibet" (Central Tibet) following the British invasion until the establishment of the PRC.[37] Only 8% of Han people have household registration in TAR, other keep their household registration in place of origin.[34]

Tibetan scholars and Tibetans in exile claim that, with the 2006 completion of the Qingzang Railway connecting the TAR to Qinghai Province, there has been an "acceleration" of Han migration into the region.[38] The exile Tibetan Administration of the Dalai Lama in north India, claims that the PRC will swarm Tibet with migrants in order to alter Tibet's demographic makeup.[39]


Main article: Religion in Tibet

Religion in Tibet (2012 estimates)[40]

Tibetan Buddhism: 78.5%
Bon: 12.5%
Chinese folk religion: 8.58%
Islam[41]: 0.4%
Christianity: 0.02%

Maitreya Buddha statue of Tashilhunpo Monastery in Shigatse

The main religion in Tibet has been Buddhism since its outspread in the 8th century AD. Before the arrival of Buddhism, the main religion among Tibetans was an indigenous shamanic and animistic religion, Bon, which now comprises a sizeable minority and which would later influence the formation of Tibetan Buddhism.

According to estimates from the International Religious Freedom Report of 2012, most of Tibetans (who comprise 91% of the population of the Tibet Autonomous Region) are bound by Tibetan Buddhism, while a minority of 400,000 people (12.5% of the total population of the TAR) are bound to the native Bon or folk religions which share the image of Confucius (Tibetan: Kongtse Trulgyi Gyalpo) with Chinese folk religion, though in a different light.[42][43] According to some reports, the government of China has been promoting the Bon religion, linking it with Confucianism.[44]

Most of the Han Chinese who reside in Tibet practice their native Chinese folk religion (神道; shén dào; 'Way of the Gods'). There is a Guandi Temple of Lhasa (拉萨关帝庙) where the Chinese god of war Guandi is identified with the cross-ethnic Chinese, Tibetan, Mongol and Manchu deity Gesar. The temple is built according to both Chinese and Tibetan architecture. It was first erected in 1792 under the Qing dynasty and renovated around 2013 after decades of disrepair.[45][46]

Built or rebuilt between 2014 and 2015 is the Guandi Temple of Qomolangma (Mount Everest), on Ganggar Mount, in Tingri County.[47][48]

There are four mosques in the Tibet Autonomous Region with approximately 4,000 to 5,000 Muslim adherents,[40] although a 2010 Chinese survey found a higher proportion of 0.4%.[41] There is a Catholic church with 700 parishioners, which is located in the traditionally Catholic community of Yanjing in the east of the region.[40]

Human rights

Main article: Human rights in Tibet

Towns and villages in Tibet

Further information: List of populated places in the Tibet Autonomous Region

"Comfortable Housing"

Beginning in 2006, 280,000 Tibetans who lived in traditional villages and as nomadic herdsmen have been forcefully relocated into villages and towns. In those areas new housing was built and existing houses were remodelled to serve a total of 2 million people. Those living in substandard housing were required to dismantle their houses and remodel them to government standards. Much of the expense was borne by the residents themselves often through bank loans. The population transfer program, which was first implemented in Qinghai where 300,000 nomads were resettled, is called "Comfortable Housing". which is part of the “Build a New Socialist Countryside” program. Its effect on Tibetan culture has been criticized by exiles and human rights groups.[49] Finding employment is difficult for relocated persons who have only agrarian skills. Income shortfalls are offset by government support programs.[50] It was announced in 2011 that 20,000 Communist Party cadres were to be placed in the new towns.[49]


Main article: Economy of Tibet

The Tibetans traditionally depended upon agriculture for survival. Since the 1980s, however, other jobs such as taxi-driving and hotel retail work have become available in the wake of Chinese economic reform. In 2011, Tibet's nominal GDP topped 60.5 billion yuan (US$9.60 billion), nearly more than seven times as big as the 11.78 billion yuan (US$1.47 billion) in 2000. Economic growth since the beginning of the 21st century has averaged over 10 percent a year.[32]

While traditional agriculture and animal husbandry continue to lead the area's economy, in 2005 the tertiary sector contributed more than half of its GDP growth, the first time it surpassed the area's primary industry.[51][52] Rich reserves of natural resources and raw materials have yet to lead to the creation of a strong secondary sector, due in large part to the province's inhospitable terrain, low population density, an underdeveloped infrastructure and the high cost of extraction.[32]

The collection of caterpillar fungus (Cordyceps sinensis, known in Tibetan as Yartsa Gunbu) in late spring / early summer is in many areas the most important source of cash for rural households. It contributes an average of 40% to rural cash income and 8.5% to the TAR's GDP.[53]

The re-opening of the Nathu La pass (on southern Tibet's border with India) should facilitate Sino-Indian border trade and boost Tibet's economy.[54]

In 2008, Chinese news media reported that the per capita disposable incomes of urban and rural residents in Tibet averaged 12,482 yuan (US$1,798) and 3,176 yuan (US$457) respectively.[55]

The China Western Development policy was adopted in 2000 by the central government to boost economic development in western China, including the Tibet Autonomous Region.

Lhasa Economic and Technological Development Zone


The Potala Palace in Lhasa, the capital of the TAR.

Foreign tourists were first permitted to visit the Tibet Autonomous Region in the 1980s. While the main attraction is the Potala Palace in Lhasa, there are many other popular tourist destinations including the Jokhang Temple, Namtso Lake, and Tashilhunpo Monastery.[56] Nonetheless, tourism in Tibet is still restricted for non-Chinese passport holders and Taiwan citizens, and presently the only way for foreigners to enter is via Tibet Entry Permit. The permit can only be obtained through a travel agency in Tibet, and travel in Tibet must be arranged in a group tour, in which the group must be accompanied by a licensed tour guide at all times. Those traveling into Tibet must specify every location they want to travel within the TAR, and thus cannot travel anywhere not specified in the application. Before entering on a train, plane, or road leading into Tibet, anyone without a Chinese passport must present the Tibet Entry Permit, or they will otherwise be denied entry. People barred from obtaining the permit are journalists, diplomats, professional media photographers, and government officials.[57]



Lhasa Gonggar Airport, the biggest airport in TAR

The civil airports in Tibet are Lhasa Gonggar Airport,[58] Qamdo Bangda Airport, Nyingchi Airport, and the Gunsa Airport.

Gunsa Airport in Ngari Prefecture began operations on 1 July 2010, to become the fourth civil airport in China's Tibet Autonomous Region.[59]

The Peace Airport for Xigazê was opened for civilian use on 30 October 2010.[60]

Nagqu Dagring Airport is expected to become the world's highest altitude airport by 2014 at 4,436 meters above sea level.[61]


The Qinghai–Tibet Railway from Golmud to Lhasa was completed on 12 October 2005. It opened to regular trial service on 1 July 2006. Five pairs of passenger trains run between Golmud and Lhasa, with connections onward to Beijing, Chengdu, Chongqing, Guangzhou, Shanghai, Xining and Lanzhou. The line includes the Tanggula Pass, which, at 5,072 m (16,640 ft) above sea level, is the world's highest railway.

The Lhasa–Xigazê Railway branch from Lhasa to Xigazê was completed in 2014. It opened to regular service on 15 August 2014. The planned China–Nepal railway will connect Xigazê to Kathmandu, capital of Nepal, and is expected to be completed around 2027.[62]

The construction of the Sichuan–Tibet Railway began in 2015. The line is expected to be completed around 2025.[63]

See also

• Geography portal
• Asia portal
• China portal
• China Tibetology Research Center
• Incorporation of Tibet into the People's Republic of China
• History of Tibet (1950–present)
• Kazara
• List of prisons in the Tibet Autonomous Region
• List of universities and colleges in Tibet
• Tibet Area, Republic of China
• Tibetan Independence Movement
• Sinicization of Tibet
• Shigatse Photovoltaic Power Plant


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3. 西藏自治区2017年国民经济和社会发展统计公报 [Statistical Communiqué of Tibet Autonomous Region on the 2017 National Economic and Social Development] (in Chinese). Statistical Bureau of Tibet Autonomous Region. 15 April 2018. Retrieved 22 June 2018.
4. "Sub-national HDI - Area Database - Global Data Lab". Retrieved 13 September 2018.
5. "What is Tibet? – Fact and Fancy", Excerpt from Goldstein, Melvyn, C. (1994). Change, Conflict and Continuity among a Community of Nomadic Pastoralist: A Case Study from Western Tibet, 1950–1990. pp. 76–87.
6. Wylie (2003), 470.
7. Wang & Nyima (1997), 1–40.
8. Laird (2006), 106–7.
9. Grunfeld, A. Tom, The Making of Modern Tibet, M.E. Sharpe, p245.
10. Gyatso, Tenzin, Dalai Lama XIV, interview, 25 July 1981.
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18. Shenzhen City Bureau of Statistics. Archived copy 《深圳统计年鉴2014》 (in Chinese). China Statistics Print. Archived from the original on 12 May 2015. Retrieved 29 May 2015.
19. Census Office of the State Council; Population and Employment Statistics Division of the National Bureau of Statistics, eds. (2012). 中国2010人口普查分乡、镇、街道资料 (1th ed.). Beijing: China Statistics Print. ISBN 978-7-5037-6660-2.
20. Ministry of Civil Affairs (August 2014). 《中国民政统计年鉴2014》 (in Chinese). China Statistics Print. ISBN 978-7-5037-7130-9.
21. Census Office of the State Council; Population and Society, Science and Technology Statitics Division of the National Bureau of Statistics, eds. (2012). 中国2010年人口普查分县资料. Beijing: China Statistics Print. ISBN 978-7-5037-6659-6.
22. "Archived copy" 1912年中国人口. Archived from the original on 24 September 2015. Retrieved 6 March 2014.
23. "Archived copy" 1928年中国人口. Archived from the original on 24 September 2015. Retrieved 6 March 2014.
24. "Archived copy" 1936–37年中国人口. Archived from the original on 24 September 2015. Retrieved 6 March2014.
25. "Archived copy" 1947年全国人口. Archived from the original on 13 September 2013. Retrieved 6 March 2014.
26. 中华人民共和国国家统计局关于第一次全国人口调查登记结果的公报. National Bureau of Statistics of China. Archived from the original on 5 August 2009.
27. 第二次全国人口普查结果的几项主要统计数字. National Bureau of Statistics of China. Archived from the originalon 14 September 2012.
28. 中华人民共和国国家统计局关于一九八二年人口普查主要数字的公报. National Bureau of Statistics of China. Archived from the original on 10 May 2012.
29. 中华人民共和国国家统计局关于一九九〇年人口普查主要数据的公报. National Bureau of Statistics of China. Archived from the original on 19 June 2012.
30. 现将2000年第五次全国人口普查快速汇总的人口地区分布数据公布如下. National Bureau of Statistics of China. Archived from the original on 29 August 2012.
31. "Communiqué of the National Bureau of Statistics of People's Republic of China on Major Figures of the 2010 Population Census". National Bureau of Statistics of China. Archived from the original on 27 July 2013.
32. China Economy @ China Perspective. Retrieved on 18 July 2013.
33. Wang, Guanqun. "Tibet's population tops three million; 90% are Tibetans". Xinhua. Archivedfrom the original on 13 May 2011. Retrieved 4 May 2011.
34. 西藏自治区常住人口超过300万. Xizang gov. Xizang gov. Archived from the original on 16 February 2013. Retrieved 6 May 2011.
35. Hannue, Dialogues Tibetan Dialogues Han
36. Yule, Henry; Waddell, Laurence (1911). "Lhasa" . In Chisholm, Hugh (ed.). Encyclopædia Britannica. 16 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. p. 531.
37. Grunfeld, A. Tom (1996). The Making of Modern Tibet. East Gate Books. pp. 114–119.
38. Johnson, Tim (28 March 2008). "Tibetans see 'Han invasion' as spurring violence | McClatchy". Archived from the original on 15 November 2009. Retrieved 11 October 2011.
39. "Population Transfer Programmes". Central Tibetan Administration. 2003. Archived from the original on 30 July 2010. Retrieved 29 July 2010.
40. Internazional Religious Freedom Report 2012 by the US government. p. 20: «Most ethnic Tibetans practice Tibetan Buddhism, although a sizeable minority practices Bon, an indigenous religion, and very small minorities practice Islam, Catholicism, or Protestantism. Some scholars estimate that there are as many as 400,000 Bon followers across the Tibetan Plateau. Scholars also estimate that there are up to 5,000 ethnic Tibetan Muslims and 700 ethnic Tibetan Catholics in the TAR.»
41. Min Junqing. The Present Situation and Characteristics of Contemporary Islam in China. JISMOR, 8. 2010 Islam by province, page 29 Archived 27 April 2017 at the Wayback Machine. Data from: Yang Zongde, Study on Current Muslim Population in China, Jinan Muslim, 2, 2010.
42. Te-Ming TSENG; Shen-Yu LIN (December 2007). 《臺灣東亞文明研究學刊》第4卷第2期(總第8期) [The Image of Confucius in Tibetan Culture] (PDF). National Taiwan University. pp. 169–207. Archived from the original (pdf) on 4 March 2016.
43. Shenyu Lin. The Tibetan Image of Confucius Archived 13 September 2017 at the Wayback Machine. Revue d’Etudes Tibétaines.
44. China-Tibet Online: Confucius ruled as a "divine king" in Tibet[permanent dead link]. 2014-11-04
45. World Guangong Culture: Lhasa, Tibet: Guandi temple was inaugurated Archived 4 March 2016 at the Wayback Machine.
46. China-Tibet Online: Tibet's largest Guandi Temple gets repaired[permanent dead link]. 2013-03-13
47. World Guangong Culture: Dingri, Tibet: Cornerstone Laying Ceremony being Grandly Held for the Reconstruction of Qomolangma Guandi Temple Archived 7 November 2017 at the Wayback Machine.
48. World Guangong Culture: Wuhan, China: Yang Song Meets Cui Yujing to Discuss Qomolangma Guandi TempleArchived 4 March 2016 at the Wayback Machine.
49. ""They Say We Should Be Grateful": Mass Rehousing and Relocation Programs in Tibetan Areas of China"(PDF). Human Rights Watch. June 2013. Archived (PDF) from the original on 12 July 2013. Retrieved 28 June 2013.
50. Jacobs, Andrew (27 June 2013). "Rights Report Faults Mass Relocation of Tibetans". The New York Times. Archived from the original on 27 June 2013. Retrieved 28 June 2013.
51. "Xinhua – Per capita GDP tops $1,000 in Tibet". Xinhua. 31 January 2006. Archived from the original on 9 June 2011. Retrieved 11 October 2011.
52. "Tibet posts fixed assets investment rise". Xinhua. 31 January 2006. Archived from the original on 9 June 2011. Retrieved 11 October 2011.
53. Winkler D. 2008 Yartsa gunbu (Cordyceps sinenis) and the fungal commodification of rural Tibet. Economic Botany 62.3. See also Hannue, Dialogues Tibetan Dialogues Han
54. Maseeh Rahman in New Delhi (19 June 2006). "China and India to trade across Himalayas | World news". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 11 October 2011.
55. "Tibetans report income rises". Archived from the original on 21 July 2011. Retrieved 11 October 2011.
56. * Birgit Zotz, Destination Tibet. Hamburg: Kovac 2010, ISBN 978-3-8300-4948-7 [1] Archived 17 January 2012 at the Wayback Machine
57. "In-depth Guide of How to get to Tibet". Archived from the original on 19 January 2016. Retrieved 18 January 2016.
58. "Gongkhar Airport in Tibet enters digital communication age". Xinhua News Agency. 12 May 2009. Archived from the original on 15 December 2010. Retrieved 12 December 2010.
59. "Tibet's fourth civil airport opens". Xinhua News Agency. 1 July 2010. Archived from the original on 14 December 2010. Retrieved 11 December 2010.
60. "Tibet to have fifth civil airport operational before year end 2010". Xinhua News Agency. 26 July 2010. Archived from the original on 15 December 2010. Retrieved 12 December 2010.
61. "World's highest-altitude airport planned on Tibet". Xinhua News Agency. 12 January 2010. Archived from the original on 15 December 2010. Retrieved 12 December 2010.
62. Giri, A; Giri, S (24 August 2018). "Nepal, China agree on rail study". The Kathmandu Post. Archived from the original on 22 September 2018. Retrieved 22 September 2018.
63. Chu. "China Approves New Railway for Tibet". CRI. Archived from the original on 9 November 2014. Retrieved 9 November 2014.

Further reading

• Hannue, Dialogues Tibetan Dialogues Han, travelogue from Tibet – by a woman who's been travelling around Tibet for over a decade, ISBN 978-988-97999-3-9
• Sorrel Wilby, Journey Across Tibet: A Young Woman's 1900-Mile Trek Across the Rooftop of the World, Contemporary Books (1988), hardcover, 236 pages, ISBN 0-8092-4608-2.
• Hillman, Ben, ‘China’s Many Tibets: Diqing as a model for ‘development with Tibetan characteristics?’ Asian Ethnicity, Vol. 11, No. 2, June 2010, pp 269–277.[ISBN missing]

External links

• Tibet Autonomous Region official website
• Economic profile for Tibet Autonomous Region at HKTDC
• Population Structure and Changes in the Tibet Autonomous Region
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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

Postby admin » Wed Nov 27, 2019 12:27 am

Part 1 of 2

Gyalo Thondup
by Wikipedia
Accessed: 11/26/19



When the United States learned that the Dalai Lama had gotten permission in early November to attend the Buddha Jayanti celebrations, the CIA scrambled to bypass Sikkim and establish direct links with Tibetan sources close to the monarch.

None were closer than the Dalai Lama's two brothers in exile. The eldest, Thubten Norbu, already had a history of indirect contact with the agency via the Committee for a Free Asia… Settling in New Jersey, Norbu began to earn a modest income teaching Tibetan to a handful of students as part of a noncredited course at Columbia University.

The other brother, Gyalo Thondup, was residing in Darjeeling. Six years Norbu's junior, Gyalo was the proverbial prodigal son… As a teen, he had befriended members of the Chinese mission in Lhasa and yearned to study in China… Gyalo got his wish in 1947 when he and a brother-in-law arrived at the Kuomintang capital of Nanking and enrolled in college.

Two years later, Gyalo, then twenty-one, veered further toward China when he married fellow student Zhu Dan. Not only was his wife ethnic Chinese, but her father, retired General Chu Shi- kuei, had been a key Kuomintang officer during the early days of the republic. Because of both his relationship to General Chu and the fact that he was the Dalai Lama's brother, Gyalo was feted in Nanking by no less than Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek…

With the communists closing in on Nanking during the final months of China's civil war, Gyalo and his wife fled in mid-1949 to the safer climes of India. Once again because of his relationship to the Dalai Lama, he was added to the invitation list for various diplomatic events and even got an audience with Prime Minister Nehru.

That October, Gyalo briefly ventured to the Tibetan enclave at Kalimpong before settling for seven months in Calcutta. While there, his father-in-law, General Chu, attempted to make contact with the Tibetan government. With the retreat of the Kuomintang to Taiwan, Chu had astutely shifted loyalty to the People's Republic and was now tasked by Beijing to arrange a meeting between Tibetan and PRC officials at a neutral site, possibly Hong Kong.

Conversant in Chinese and linked to both the Dalai Lama and General Chu, Gyalo was a logical intermediary for the Hong Kong talks… Unable to gain quick entry to the crown colony, Gyalo made what he intended to be a brief diversion to the Republic of China (ROC) on Taiwan. But Chiang Kai- shek, no doubt anxious to keep Gyalo away from General Chu and the PRC, had other plans. Smothering the royal sibling with largesse, Chiang kept Gyalo in Taipei for the next sixteen months. Only after a desperate letter to U.S. Secretary of State Dean Acheson requesting American diplomatic intervention did the ROC relent and give Gyalo an exit permit.

After arriving in Washington in September 1951, Gyalo continued to dabble in diplomacy. Within a month of his arrival, he was called to a meeting at the State Department. Significantly, Gyalo's Chinese wife was at his side during the encounter. Because of the couple's close ties to Chiang, department representatives assumed that details of their talk would quickly be passed to the Kuomintang Nationalists…

Despite State Department efforts to secure him a scholarship at Stanford University, he hurriedly departed the United States in February 1952 for the Indian subcontinent. Leaving his wife behind, he then trekked back to Lhasa after a six-year absence.

By that time, Beijing had a secure foothold in the Tibetan capital. Upon meeting this wayward member of the royal family, the local PRC representatives were pleased. As a Chinese speaker married to one of their own, Gyalo was perceived as a natural ally. Yet again, however, he would prove a disappointment. After showing some interest in promoting a bold land reform program championed by the Dalai Lama, Gyalo once more grew restive. In late spring, he secretly met with the Indian consul in Lhasa, and after promising to refrain from politicking, he was given permission to resettle in India…

Noting his recent return to Darjeeling, the U.S. embassy in early August 1952 cautiously considered establishing contact. Calcutta's Consul General Gary Soulen saw an opportunity in early September while returning from his Sikkim trek with Princess Kukula. Pausing in Darjeeling, Soulen stayed long enough for Gyalo to pass on the latest information from his contacts within the Tibetan merchant community.

Although he had promised to refrain from exile politics, Gyalo saw no conflict in courting senior Indian officials. In particular, he sought a meeting with India's spymaster Bhola Nath Mullik. As head of Indian intelligence, Mullik presided over an organization with deep colonial roots. Established in 1887 as the central Special Branch, it had been organized by the British to keep tabs on the rising tide of Indian nationalism. Despite several redesignations before arriving at the title Intelligence Bureau, anticolonialists remained its primary target for the next sixty years.

Upon independence in 1947, Prime Minister Nehru appointed the bureau's first Indian director…

Three years later, Mullik became the bureau's second director. A police officer since the age of twenty-two, the taciturn Mullik was known for his boundless energy (he often worked sixteen-hour days), close ties to Nehru, healthy suspicion of China, and (rare for a senior Indian official) predisposition against communism. Almost immediately, the Tibetan frontier became his top concern. This followed Beijing's invasion of Kham that October, which meant that India's military planners now had to contend with a hypothetical front besides Pakistan. Moreover, the tribal regions of northeastern India were far from integrated, and revolutionaries in those areas could now easily receive Chinese support. The previous year, in fact, the bureau had held a conference on risks associated with Chinese infiltration.

Despite Mullik's concerns, Nehru was prone to downplay the potential Chinese threat. Not only did he think it ludicrous to prepare for a full-scale Chinese attack, but he saw real benefits in cultivating Beijing to offset Pakistan's emerging strategy of anticommunist cooperation with the West. "It was Nehru's idealism against hard-headed Chinese realism," said one Intelligence Bureau official. "Mullik injected healthy suspicions."

Astute enough to hedge his bets, Nehru allowed Mullik some leeway in improving security along the border and collecting intelligence on Chinese forces in Tibet. To accomplish this, Mullik expanded the number of Indian frontier posts strung across the Himalayas. In addition, he sought contact with Tibetans living in the Darjeeling and Kalimpong enclaves. Not only could these Tibetans be tapped for information, but a symbolic visit by a senior official like Mullik would lift morale at a time when their homeland was being subjugated. Such contact, moreover, could give New Delhi advance warning of any subversive activity in Tibet being staged from Indian soil.

Of all the Tibetan expatriates, Mullik had his eye on Gyalo Thondup. Besides having an insider's perspective of the high offices in Lhasa, Gyalo had already passed word of his desire for a meeting. Prior to his departure for his first visit to Darjeeling in the spring of 1953, Mullik asked for -- and quickly received -- permission from the prime minister to include the Dalai Lama's brother on his itinerary. Their subsequent exchange of views went well, as did their tete-a-tete during Mullik's second visit to Darjeeling in 1954…

To earn a living, [Gyalo] ironically began exporting Indian tea and whiskey to Chinese troops and administrators in Tibet. For leisure, he and his family were frequent guests at the Gymkhana Club. Part of an exclusive resort chain that was once a playpen for the subcontinent's colonial elite, the Gymkhana's Darjeeling branch was situated amid terraced gardens against the picturesque backdrop of Kanchenjunga. A regular on the tennis courts, the Dalai Lama 's brother was the local champion.

In the summer of 1956, Gyalo's respite came to an abrupt end. The senior abbot and governor from the Tibetan town of Gyantse had recently made his escape to India and in July wrote a short report about China's excesses. Gyalo repackaged the letter in English and mailed copies to the Indian media, several diplomatic missions, and selected world leaders. One of these arrived in early September at the U.S. embassy in the Pakistani capital of Karachi, and from there was disseminated to the American mission in New Delhi and consulate in Calcutta…

Once word reached India in early November that the Dalai Lama would be attending the Buddha Jayanti, John Hoskins got an urgent cable from headquarters. Put aside your efforts against the Chinese community, he was told, and make immediate contact with Gyalo. A quick check indicated Gyalo's predilection for tennis, so Hoskins got a racket and headed north to Darjeeling. After arranging to get paired with Gyalo for a doubles match, the CIA officer wasted no time in quietly introducing himself…

Hoskins was not exactly wowed by Gyalo's persona. "There was a lot of submissiveness rather than dynamism," he noted. At their first meeting, little was discussed apart from reaching an understanding that, to avoid Indian intelligence coverage in Darjeeling, future contact would be made in Calcutta using proper countersurveillance measures.

Later that same month, the Dalai Lama and a fifty-strong delegation departed Lhasa by car. Switching to horses at the Sikkimese border, the royal entourage was met on the other side by both Gyalo and Norbu, who had rushed to India from his teaching assignment in New York. The party was whisked through Gangtok and down to the closest Indian airfield near the town of Siliguri, and by 25 November the monarch was being met by Nehru on the tarmac of New Delhi's Palam Airport.

By coincidence, three days after the Dalai Lama's arrival in New Delhi, Chinese premier Zhou En-Lai began a twelve-day stop in India as part of a five-country South Asian tour. Keeping with diplomatic protocol, the young Tibetan leader was on hand to greet Zhou at the airport. The two then held a private meeting, at which time the elderly Chinese statesman lectured the Dalai Lama on the necessity of returning to his homeland.

Zhou was not alone in his appeal. As eager as Nehru was to offset Chinese influence in Tibet, he, too, was against the Dalai Lama's seeking asylum -- especially on Indian soil. This was partly because India wanted to maintain good relations with China. This was also because New Delhi did not want to go it alone, and not a single country to date had recognized Tibetan independence. Fearing that the monarch's brothers would have an unhealthy effect on any decision, Indian officials in the capital did all in their power to keep Gyalo and Norbu segregated from their royal sibling.

The Dalai Lama hardly needed convincing from his brothers, however. During his first private session with Nehru, he openly hinted about not going back to Lhasa. He also requested that the issue of Tibetan independence be taken up by Nehru and President Dwight Eisenhower at their upcoming summit in Washington in December. Nehru was not entirely surprised by all this: Gyalo had already sought out Mullik and told the Indian intelligence chief in no uncertain terms that his brother would opt for exile.

As India's leadership digested these developments, the Dalai Lama departed the capital for an exhausting schedule of Buddha Jayanti festivities. He was still in the midst of this tour when Zhou returned to New Delhi for an encore visit on 30 December. In the interim, Nehru had had his Washington meeting with Eisenhower, and the Chinese premier had scheduled the stop specifically to discuss the outcome of that summit. As it turned out, however, Tibet was a major topic of conversation. In particular, Nehru used the opportunity to press Zhou about tempering China's harsh military and agrarian policies on the Tibetan plateau…

Anxious to broker a deal that would assuage both Lhasa and Beijing, Nehru summoned the Dalai Lama from his pilgrimage and underscored to the Tibetan leader that Indian asylum was not in the cards. But if that was bitter news, Zhou had earlier proposed a sweetener. While noting that China was ready to use force to stamp out resistance, he claimed that Mao now recognized the folly of rapid collectivization and pledged to delay further revolutionary reforms in Tibet.

Zhou and his senior comrades were by now gravely concerned over permanently losing the Dalai Lama. Leaving nothing to chance, Zhou was back in New Delhi on 24 January 1957 for his third visit in as many months.

Despite Beijing's lobbying, Gyalo and Norbu were still insistent that their brother choose exile. Torn over his future, the twenty-one-year-old monarch had already departed Calcutta on 22 January for Kalimpong, which by then was home to a growing number of disaffected Tibetan elite. Once there, he did what Tibet's leaders had done countless other times when confronted with a hard decision: he consulted the state oracle. Two official soothsayers happened to be traveling with his delegation; using time-honored -- if unscientific -- methods, the pair went into a trance on cue and recited their sagely advice. Return to Lhasa, they channeled.

As far as the Dalai Lama was concerned, the ruling of his oracles was incontrovertible, and the decision was made all the easier by the fact that nobody seemed anxious to give him refuge. Flouting the suggestions of his brothers, he declared his intention to go home. He crossed into Sikkim in early March and was compelled to remain in Gangtok until heavy snows melted from the mountain passes. There, he finalized plans to set out for Lhasa by month's end…

[A]s soon as the Dalai Lama received permission to attend the Buddha Jayanti, [William] Broe [CIA China Branch] felt it prudent to show heightened interest. Looking for a junior officer to spare, he soon settled on John Reagan. Twenty-eight years old, Reagan had joined the agency upon graduation from Boston College in 1951. He was soon in Asia, where he spent the next twenty-four months working on paramilitary projects in Korea. Switching to China Branch, he served two more years in Japan as part of the CIA's penetration effort against the PRC. Returning to the United States in 1955, Reagan divided the next twelve months between Chinese language training and trips to New York City to practice tradecraft against United Nations delegates.

As the branch's new man on Tibet, Reagan initially did little more than forward instructions for John Hoskins to make contact with Gyalo. He was silent on further guidance, primarily because senior U.S. policy makers had not yet ironed out a coherent framework for dealing with Lhasa. In earlier meetings between CIA and State Department officials during the summer of 1956, there had been those who felt that the Dalai Lama should flee to another Buddhist nation to offer a rallying cry for anticommunist Buddhists across Asia. Others, primarily inside the agency, believed that he could play a more important role as a rallying symbol in Lhasa among his fellow Tibetans. This was still the CIA's operating assumption in late 1956: once the Dalai Lama was in India, the prevailing mood at agency headquarters was that he should eventually go home.

Gyalo, meantime, was telling Hoskins that his brother had every intention of seeking asylum. With the Dalai Lama apparently intent on staying away from his homeland -- and therefore not conforming to the agency's preferred scenario of rallying his people from Lhasa -- Reagan was largely idle during most of the Dalai Lama's four-month absence from Tibet.

Eventually, however, the CIA looked to hedge its bets. Since the second half of 1956, a band of twenty-seven young Khampa men -- some still in their late teens -- had been growing restive in the enclave of Kalimpong. Most came from relatively wealthy trading families and had been spirited to India to protect them from the instability in their native province. Full of vigor, the entire group had ventured to New Delhi shortly before the Dalai Lama's Buddha Jayanti pilgrimage to conduct street protests. Once the Dalai Lama arrived, they sought a brief audience to make an impassioned plea for Lhasa's intercession against the Chinese offensive in Kham.

To their disappointment, the Dalai Lama counseled patience. "His Holiness only said things would settle down," recalls one of the Khampas. Undaunted, the twenty-seven young men shadowed the monarch during several of the Buddha Jayanti commemorative events. By early January 1957, this took them to Bodh Gaya, the city in eastern India where the historical Buddha was said to have attained enlightenment. While there, the Dalai Lama's older brother, Thubten Norbu, approached the Khampas and asked if he could take their individual photographs as a souvenir. Although it was an odd request, they complied.

For the next few weeks, nothing happened. Frustrated by the Dalai Lama's repeated rebuffs, the Khampas sulked back to Kalimpong. Several Chinese traders were in town, some of whom were rumored to have links to the Nationalist regime on Taiwan. Desperate, the Khampas sounded them out on the possibility of covert assistance from Taipei. It was at that point that Gyalo Thondup arrived and requested a meeting with all twenty-seven. For most of the young Khampas, it was the first time they had spoken with the Dalai Lama's lay brother. As they listened attentively, Gyalo lectured them to steer clear of the Kuomintang. "The United States," he told them cryptically, "is a better choice."

Less than a week later, the Dalai Lama arrived in Kalimpong, the oracles had their channeling session, and things changed dramatically. With the monarch's return journey now imminent, John Reagan in Washington scrambled to script a program of action. At its core, the plan called for a unilateral capability to determine how much armed resistance activity really existed in Tibet; further commitments could then be weighed accordingly.

The CIA had good reason to act with prudence. It already had a long and growing list of embarrassing failures while working with resistance groups behind communist lines. Perhaps none had been more painful than its experience against the PRC. There the agency's efforts had taken two tracks. The first was a collaborative effort with the Kuomintang government on Taiwan. Clinging to its dream of reconquering the mainland, the ROC in 1950 claimed to control a million guerrillas inside the People's Republic. Although a February 1951 Pentagon study placed the figure at no more than 600,000 -- only half of which were thought to be nominally loyal to the ROC -- Washington saw fit to support these insurgents as a means of appeasing a key Asian ally while at the same time possibly diverting Beijing's attention from the conflict on the Korean peninsula.

To funnel covert American assistance to the ROC, the CIA established a shell company in Pittsburgh known as Western Enterprises (WE). In September 1951, WE's newly appointed chief, Raymond Peers, arrived on Taiwan with a planeload of advisers. A U.S. Army colonel who had earned accolades during World War II as chief of the famed OSS Detachment 101 in Burma, Peers quickly initiated a number of paramilitary efforts. A large portion of his resources was directed toward airborne operations, including retraining the ROC's 1,500-man parachute regiment. Other WE advisers, meanwhile, were tasked with putting ROC action and intelligence teams through an airborne course.

To deploy these operatives, WE turned to the agency's Far East air proprietary, Civil Air Transport (CAT). By the spring of 1952, CAT planes were dropping teams and singletons on the mainland, as well as supplies to resistance groups that the ROC claimed were already active on the ground. Some of the penetrations ranged as far as Tibet's Amdo region, where the ROC alleged it had contact with Muslim insurgents.

Concurrently, the agency in April 1951 initiated a unilateral third-force effort using anticommunist Chinese unaffiliated with the ROC. Allocated enough arms and ammunition for 200,000 guerrillas, the CIA recruited many of these third-force operatives from Hong Kong, trained them in Japan and Saipan, and inserted them in CAT planes via air bases in South Korea…

That summer, an armistice sent the Korean conflict into remission. This provided the CIA with convenient cover to reassess its third-force track. Although it elected to maintain a China Base at Yokosuka, Japan, this unit was to handle primarily agent penetrations and low-level destabilization efforts; support for broader unilateral resistance got the ax.

Cooperative ventures with the ROC were not so easily nixed. Although Taipei had tempered its claims somewhat, it still pegged loyal mainland guerrilla strength at 650,000 insurgents. By contrast, a November 1953 estimate by the U.S. National Security Council (NSC) put the figure closer to 50,000. Despite this huge discrepancy, the NSC still advocated continued covert assistance to the ROC in order to develop anticommunist guerrillas for resistance and intelligence. Even temporary guerrilla successes, the council reasoned, might set off waves of defections and stiffen passive resistance.

Chiang Kai-shek could not have agreed more. Eager to vastly increase the scope of guerrilla support, the generalissimo in 1954 asked Washington for some 30,000 parachutes. Turned down the first time, he made further high-priority appeals over the next two years. These parachutes were needed for an ambitious plan to drop 100-man units near major PRC population centers. Hoping to set off a chain of uprisings, Chiang optimistically talked in terms of uprooting Chinese communism in as little as two years.

Hearing these plans, Washington patiently counseled against the proposed airborne blitz. On a more modest level, however, the CIA's assistance program continued unabated. In this, success was more elusive than ever. Despite inserting an average of two Nationalist agents a month through the mid-1950s, the ROC operatives were still being killed or captured in short order.

Although these reasons might have made covert operations against the PRC a study in frustration, Tibet appeared to be different. Unlike many of Taipei's wishful claims about other areas of the mainland, Tibet had a resistance movement corroborated by multiple, albeit dated, sources. What the CIA needed was timely data that could give a current and accurate picture of this resistance. And given the historical animosity between Tibetans and lowland Chinese, the agency needed to gather this information without resort to ROC assistance.

In February 1957, John Hoskins was ordered by Washington to immediately identify eight Tibetan candidates for external training as a pilot team that would infiltrate their homeland and assess the state of resistance. Gyalo, who had been in Kalimpong making an eleventh-hour bid to convince his brother to seek asylum, was given responsibility for screening candidates among the Tibetan refugees already in India. Although the twenty-seven Khampas did not know it, Gyalo intended to make the selection from their ranks. Using the photographs taken by Norbu at Bodh Gaya, he sought guidance from two senior Khampas in town, both of whom hailed from the extended family of Gompo Tashi Andrugtsang, a prominent trader of Tibetan wool, deer horns, and musk.

With their assistance, Gyalo soon settled on his first pick. Wangdu Gyato-tsang, age twenty-seven, had been born to an affluent Khampa family from the town of Lithang. He was well connected: Gompo Tashi was his uncle, as was one of the senior Khampas helping Gyalo with the selection. Wangdu also had the right disposition for the task at hand. Despite being schooled at the Lithang monastery from the age of ten, he did not exactly conform to monastic life. "He was hot tempered from childhood," recalls younger brother Kalsang...

When approached by Gyalo, Wangdu immediately volunteered for the mission. Within days, five other Khampas were singled out (Washington now wanted a total of six trainees, not eight), but only Wangdu was given any hint of the impending assignment. Four were from Lithang; of these, three were Wangdu's close acquaintances, and one was his family servant. The fifth was a friend from the nearby town of Bathang (also spelled Batang). All were still on hand to attend the Dalai Lama's final open-air blessing in a Kalimpong soccer field shortly before the monarch headed back toward Tibet.

-- The CIA's Secret War in Tibet, by Kenneth Conboy and James Morrison

Gyalo Thondup

Gyalo Thondup in 1948 or 1949, standing in front of a large window of the Dalai Lama's family house, Yabshi Taktser, in Lhasa. He is wearing a woollen robe and felt boots. The bottom part of a bird cage can be seen at the top of the image.

Gyalo Thondup (Tibetan: རྒྱལ་ལོ་དོན་འགྲུབ, Wylie: rgyal lo don 'grub; Chinese: 嘉乐顿珠; pinyin: Jiālè Dùnzhū), born c.1927,[1] is the second-eldest brother of the 14th Dalai Lama. He often acted as the Dalai Lama's unofficial envoy, and was involved in various political controversies around the Tibetan diaspora.[2]

Early life

In late fall of 1927,[1] Gyalo Thondup was born in the village of Taktser[3] Ping'an District, Qinghai province. In 1939, he moved with his family to Lhasa.

In 1942, at the age of 14, Thondup went to Nanjing, the capital of Republican China, to study Standard Chinese and the history of China. He often visited Chiang Kai-shek at his home and ate dinner with him.[4] "In fact, young Gyalo Thondup ate his meals at the Chiang family table, from April 1947 until the summer of 1949, and tutors selected by Chiang educated the boy."[5] In 1948, he married Zhu Dan, the daughter of a Guomindang general.

Political involvement

In 1949, before the Communist revolution of that year in China, Thondup left Nanjing for India via British Hong Kong. "Gyalo Thondup... was the first officially acknowledged Tibetan to visit Taiwan since 1949. Taipei Radio announced the meeting between President Chang Kai-shek on 21 May 1950."[6] Fluent in Chinese, Tibetan and English,[5] he "later facilitated semi-official contacts between the Tibetan-government-in-exile and the Republic of China (ROC) as well as with the People's Republic of China (PRC) government in 1979."[6]
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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

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United States activities

In 1951, he traveled to America and became the main source of information on Tibet for the United States Department of State.[7] America's Central Intelligence Agency promised to make Tibet independent from China in exchange for Thondup's support in organizing guerrilla units to fight against the People's Liberation Army, an offer which Thondup accepted.[4][8][9] Thondup maintains that he did not inform the 14th Dalai Lama about the CIA's actions,[10] and this support ended after the 1972 Nixon visit to China [February 21 to 28, 1972].

The Dalai Lama and Major General Uban, the inspector general of the SFF [Special Frontier Force], review the SFF at Chakrata, June 1972

Not until 17 March, during the third channeling session in a week, did the oracle buckle. "Leave tonight," was his entranced message. The dice, too, cooperated, giving identical advice. [20]

The Dalai Lama hardly needed prompting. At nightfall, he stole out of Lhasa on the back of a pony while disguised as a peasant. With him were his mother, younger brother, sister, and a coterie of tutors and counsels. Just prior to this, the lord chamberlain had composed a message for the Indian consul general broaching the possibility of exile. He also dispatched a courier to Yarlung with a note for the NVDA to prepare a reception committee. Although that message had yet to reach Yarlung, Phala had arranged for a small band of rebel escorts to wait on the riverbank opposite Lhasa as the Dalai Lama's party crossed in a yak-skin coracle. Pausing briefly for a final glimpse of the lights flickering in his capital, the Tibetan leader pressed south. [21]

Back in Lhasa, neither the Chinese nor the crowds outside the Norbulingka were yet aware of the Dalai Lama's flight. His departure proved timely, for within a day after his departure, the citizenry broke into full-scale rioting. In this they were supported by the Tibetan army, which had belatedly thrown off its gloves and was attempting to seize strategic points around the capital. Responding in kind, the PLA dropped the last vestiges of restraint and on 20 March started shelling the Norbulingka. Just four days later, the resisters were in full flight from the city.

For the better part of a week, the location of the Dalai Lama and his escape party was a mystery to the outside world. The first to get a hint of his fate was the CIA; this came after the lord chamberlain's message to Yarlung was forwarded by courier on horseback to Tom and Lou at the NVDA rear base in Lhuntse Dzong. [22] Upon reading this, Tom took his radio set and, together with a small band of guerrillas, sprinted to intercept the Dalai Lama near the Chongye valley, thirty kilometers north of the Drigu Tso. Lou followed in his wake with another group hauling the bulk of the weapons received during the second weapons drop.

On 25 March, eight days after he departed Lhasa, the Dalai Lama and his followers arrived at Chongye and linked up with Tom's advance NVDA party. While there, the Tibetan leader was enlightened about the CIA supply drops and the RS-1 radio, which was kept hidden. Discreetly taking his leave, Tom returned to the radio and keyed a message to Okinawa. Tibet's god-king, he informed the agency, was alive and well....

By 27 March, Washington time, the U.S. president knew that the Dalai Lama had already reached the NVDA rear base at Lhuntse Dzong. The monarch initially intended to wait there and negotiate his return to Lhasa, just as he had done from Yatung in 1951. But when he turned on his transistor that morning and heard that Beijing had formally dissolved the Tibetan government, chances for a temporary in-country exile began wafting away.

Defiant, the Dalai Lama gathered his entourage inside the village's hilltop fort. Repudiating the seventeen-point agreement, he cut orders for the reestablishment of the Tibetan government just disbanded by China. Though largely hollow, the move lifted spirits. Looking to celebrate with what means were at hand, Lou promptly unveiled a 57mm recoilless rifle (from the second airdrop) and fired three rounds into a nearby cliff. [23]....

The Dalai Lama's move was not unexpected, and the agency already had an inkling that India would give its nod. Two days earlier, CIA Director Dulles had informed the rest of the NSC that Prime Minister Nehru had privately hinted his support of asylum for the Dalai Lama, but not for the fleeing armed rebels, for fear of provoking incursions by the PLA. [25]

At the same time, policy makers in Washington had come to the conclusion that the Dalai Lama's exile was in the United States' interest. [26] Given its radio link at the scene, the CIA was the logical intermediary to facilitate Indian approval. No time was wasted; at 1:00 in the morning on Sunday, 29 March, a message was sent from Washington to the CIA's New Delhi station asking that it relay the plea directly to Nehru.

Back in Tibet, the Dalai Lama and his entourage had not waited for an answer. Leaving Lhuntse Dzong and riding for a day, they reached a village just four hours from the Indian frontier. Huddling that night inside their tent during a torrential downpour, the CIA agents turned on their radio and learned of New Delhi's official consent via Washington. [27]....

The Dalai Lama, though haggard after almost two weeks on the road and weakened by a bout of dysentery, was visibly elated.....

The following day, 31 March, some of the fittest members of the Dalai Lama's party went forward toward the border. In one of his last acts on Tibetan soil, the monarch penned a document conveying the rank of general to Gompo Tashi. The next morning, after bidding farewell to his NVDA escorts and the CIA radiomen, he and the rest of his eighty-person entourage worked their way south over the final stretch to India's lush, steaming Assam lowlands. [29]....

By the end of the second week of April, the Dalai Lama had reached Bomdila and made immediate contact with [P. N.] Menon and Dave. Just as quickly, their talks grew heated. Counseling moderation, Menon urged the monarch to refrain from any mention of an independent government in exile during his initial public statement, which he would presumably make upon confronting the mob of newsmen at Tezpur. At this, the Dalai Lama bristled. His press announcement had already been penned, he said, and he was determined to push for independence. The monarch told Menon defiantly that if New Delhi insisted that he accept the limited role of prominent religious leader, perhaps he should not accept Nehru's offer of asylum.

Parappil-Narayana Menon (1920-22 June 1975), also known as P.N. Menon, was a career diplomat in the Indian Foreign Service. Like his father-in-law, he undertook an overland journey to Lhasa in 1956, on foot and on horseback through the formidable Nathula Pass, to take up his post as India's Consul-General in Tibet.

He was married to Malini, the daughter of first Foreign Secretary of India, K.P.S. Menon.[3] His son is Shivshankar Menon, who as of 2011 was the National Security Advisor to the Prime Minister of India.

P.N. Menon first joined the Indian Foreign Service in 1947. At one point, he served as Consul-General of India in Lhasa, and later served as intermediary to the young Dalai Lama during the 1959 Tibetan uprising.

-- P.N. Menon (Diplomat), by Wikipedia

Clearly unsatisfied, the Dalai Lama departed Bomdila by jeep on 18 April and was finally able to meet Gyalo and relay his early frustration with New Delhi. The Dalai Lama also used the opportunity to pass his brother a verbal message to the U.S. government, reaffirming his determination to support the resistance of his people and asking Washington to recognize his exiled government and supply those who were continuing the resistance.


With this second guerrilla network running by the start of 1959, at long last the task force was beginning to hit its stride.

On the diplomatic front, too, the struggle for Tibet was heating up. Back on 23 April [1959], the Dalai Lama had sent his oral message to the U.S. government through Gyalo Thondup, reaffirming his determination to support the resistance of his people. He made two requests of Washington at that time: recognize his soon-to-be-formed government in exile, and continue to supply the resistance. He reiterated these themes in a formal scroll, a summary of which reached the White House by 16 June.


By mid-1962, however, India's military leaders began wondering whether they were overextended. Their fears seemed justified when Dalvi's report about the Towang attack reached New Delhi. But to the shock and dismay of the field commanders in NEFA [Northeast Frontier Agency], [Parappil-Narayana] Menon, preoccupied with preparations for the upcoming United Nations General Assembly session later in September, was keen to dismiss the incident as nothing more serious than the minor incursions of previous years.

One month later, there could be no mistaking Chinese intent. On 20 October, PLA troops rolled down from the Himalayas and smashed Indian outposts across a wide front. Better acclimated to the altitude, properly stocked from nearby roads, and outnumbering the Indians eight to one, the PLA held every key advantage and showed it. "We were flabbergasted," said one National Security Council staffer, "when the Chinese wiped the floor with the Indians." [17]


No two Indian officials felt the heat from the losses more than Defense Minister Menon and the chief of the General Staff, Lieutenant General B. M. Kaul. Both were inextricably linked: Menon had been instrumental in getting Kaul his senior post, catapulting him over better-qualified generals in the process. This was partly because Kaul was regarded as less pro-Western than many of his peers, lending him the same political mind-set as the defense minister. Menon was also well aware that Kaul shared Kashmiri roots with Nehru, who viewed the general as a protege and trusted confidant.

Stung by the resultant whispers of nepotism, Kaul had tried to bolster his image by taking personal charge of a newly created corps set to expel the Chinese from NEFA. Not only had this fallen apart during the third week of October, but Kaul had earlier been stricken with a lung infection and sat out the bleakest days in bed in New Delhi. Humiliated and ill, the general sought out Menon to brainstorm ways of salvaging the desperate situation in the Himalayas -- and their careers.

One solution, they felt, was to create a guerrilla force that could strike deep behind Chinese lines. Because the Chinese were coming from Tibet, members of that ethnic group were the logical guerrillas of choice. Finding volunteers would not be a problem; both knew that there was no shortage of Tibetans on Indian soil, and virtually all were vehemently anti-Chinese and would not hesitate to take up arms for their own patriotic reasons.

But who would lead such a force? They needed a senior Indian officer who could win the confidence of the Tibetans, embracing their independent nature and promoting a semblance of discipline without resort to a rigid army code. And he would need to have a bent for the unconventional -- something that was in short supply in the Indian military, as the trench mentality in the Himalayas had dramatically proved. [18]

As they scoured the roster of available officers, one name caught their eye. Brigadier Sujan Singh Uban, until recently the commander of the 26th Artillery Brigade in Kashmir, was in New Delhi after having just processed his retirement papers. Forty-eight years old, he had been an artilleryman all his career, first under the British colonial system and then with the Indian military after independence. Normally, this would have provided little room for innovation, but Uban had spent much time with mountain units and was familiar with fighting at high altitudes. And during a stint as an artillery instructor for jungle warfare units, he had earned the nickname "Mad Sikh" for his flair and drive. That small detail was enough for Menon and Kaul, who flashed an urgent message summoning the brigadier.

On 26 October, Uban was sitting in the defense minister's office. The situation on the border -- and the status of Menon and Kaul -- had already reached a critical point. With the Chinese still inside Indian territory, Uban was given sketchy details of the proposed behind-the-lines guerrilla mission. Working with the Tibetans would not be easy, warned Kaul. Disciplining them, he said, would be like taming wild tigers. As a sweetener, the brigadier was promised a second star in due course. Uban was hooked; he grabbed the assignment without hesitation. [19]

Now that the guerrilla force had a leader, there remained the job of signing on Tibetan volunteers. To help, the Indians sent an emissary from the Intelligence Bureau to Darjeeling to fetch the Dalai Lama's brother, Gyalo Thondup. After years of attempting to court the Indians -- who were often sympathetic but never committal -- Gyalo relished the moment as he sat in front of a select group of senior intelligence and military officials in the capital. Speaking in theoretical terms, his hosts asked whether he could organize the needed volunteers. Of course, replied Gyalo. When asked how many, he conjured a robust, round figure. Five thousand, he said. [20]

Next came a key question. Would Gyalo prefer that the Intelligence Bureau or the Ministry of Defense be involved? Based on his earlier contact with Mullik and his current cooperation with the CIA (through Lhamo Tsering), the decision was easy. "Not Defense," was his indirect answer. [21]

Despite India's woes -- and its newfound interest in the Tibetans -- most of Washington took little notice. Half a world away in the waters around Cuba, nuclear brinkmanship was being taken to the limit as President Kennedy demanded a withdrawal of Soviet missiles from that island. Not until 28 October did the world breathe a sigh of relief when Moscow agreed to withdraw its weaponry. With that crisis over, the Sino-Indian conflict belatedly leapfrogged to the top of Washington's foreign policy agenda.

The very next day, Prime Minister Nehru made an unequivocal request for U.S. military assistance. For the tired, beaten leader, it was a humbling overture. It was an admission not only that his central belief in peaceful coexistence with the PRC was irrevocably shattered but also that his cordial relationship with the Soviet Union had proved hollow. Due to the Cuban missile crisis, the Soviets had been forced to side with China vis-a-vis India so as not to alienate a needed communist ally in their moment of danger. Not only did Moscow backpedal on its earlier promise to sell MiG-21 jets to India, but on 29 October it openly declared that it would recognize Chinese territorial claims and extend no arms at all to India. [22]

Immediately, Washington stepped into the fray and responded generously to Nehru's appeal for assistance. By 2 November, the USAF was using Europe-based Boeing 707 transports to fly eight missions into India every day for a week. Each plane was packed with basic infantry equipment to refit the soldiers streaming off the Himalayas, who in most cases were outfitted with more primitive gear than had been afforded the CIA's Tibetan guerrillas. These supplies were later ferried by USAF C-130 transports to smaller airfields near the frontier battle lines. [23]

Still, the aid did not turn the tide. On 14 November, an Indian counterattack in NEFA was soundly routed. Three days later, the entire NEFA line collapsed, giving China virtual control over 64,000 square kilometers of territory. By 19 November, leaders in New Delhi genuinely feared an attack on Calcutta, prompting Nehru to take the extraordinary step of sending two secret back-channel messages to Kennedy pleading for a pair of bomber squadrons flown by U.S. pilots.

India's infantrymen and Nehru's pride were not the only casualties of the conflict. Back on 28 October, America's bete noire, the discredited Krishna Menon, had tendered his resignation. With him out of the way and the situation on the frontier critical, Kennedy gathered some of his best and brightest on 19 November to discuss the war in the Himalayas. Among those present were secretary of Defense McNamara, Secretary of State Dean Rusk, and Assistant Secretary of State for Far Eastern Affairs Averell Harriman. At seventy-two, Harriman was one of America's most respected diplomats and politicians. The former governor had worked closely with the Indians in the past, having appealed to Nehru the previous year to assist in formulating a negotiated end to the looming superpower rivalry in Laos. Significantly, too, throughout the summer of 1962, Harriman had been a lone senior voice in the State Department supporting the CIA's argument for ongoing paramilitary operations out of Mustang.

Discussed at the 19 November meeting was increased U.S. military assistance to India and options for a show of force in the region. Also mentioned was the possibility of using the CIA's Tibetan guerrillas. John McCone, a wealthy and opinionated Republican chosen by Kennedy to replace CIA Director Dulles after the Bay of Pigs, was on hand to brief the president on such covert matters. Joining McCone was Des FitzGerald, the Far East chief; James Critchfield, head of the Near East Division, was touring Beirut at the time. [24]

By meeting's end, it was decided that Harriman would lead a high-powered delegation to New Delhi to more fully assess India's needs. General Paul Adams, chief of the U.S. Strike Command, was to head the military component. From the CIA, Des FitzGerald won a seat on the mission, as did the head of the Tibet Task Force, Ken Knaus. Rendezvousing with them in India would be Critchfield, who received an emergency cable to depart Lebanon immediately for the subcontinent.

On 21 November, Harriman's entourage departed Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland. Although the Chinese declared a unilateral cease-fire while the group was en route, the situation was still tense when it reached New Delhi the following day. Without pause, Ambassador Galbraith ushered Harriman into the first of four meetings with Nehru. The end results of these discussions were plans for a major three-phase military aid package encompassing material support, help with domestic defense production, and possible assistance with air defenses.

As a covert aside to Harriman's talks, the CIA representatives on the delegation held their own sessions with Indian intelligence czar Mullik. This was a first, as Galbraith had previously taken great pains to downscale the agency's activities inside India to all but benign reporting functions. As recently as 5 November, he had objected to projected CIA plans due to the risk of exposure. But in a 13 November letter to Kennedy, the ambassador had a qualified change of heart, noting that Menon's departure was a turning point to begin working with the Indians on "sensitive matters." [25]

Both the CIA and the Intelligence Bureau were quick to seize the opportunity. "I went into a huddle with Mullik and Des," recalls Critchfield, "and we started coming up with all these schemes against the Chinese." Most of their ideas centered around use of the Tibetans. "The Indians were interested in the Tibet program because of its intelligence collection value," said station chief David Blee, who sat in on some of the meetings. "Mullik was particularly interested in paramilitary operations." [26] There was good reason for this: following Menon's resignation, and Gyalo Thondup's stated preference, the Intelligence Bureau had been placed in charge of the 5,000 Tibetan guerrillas forming under Brigadier Uban.

Mullik was cautious as well. Although he was well connected to the Nehru family and had the prime minister's full approval to talk with the CIA, he knew that the Indian populace was fickle, and until recently, anti-Americanism had been a popular mantra. It was perhaps only a matter of time before the barometer would swing back and make open Indo-U.S. cooperation political suicide. To offer some protection against this, Mullik and one of his close deputies, M. I. Hooja, made a special request during a session with FitzGerald and Blee. "They made us promise that our involvement," said Blee, "would remain secret forever." [27]

By the end of the Harriman mission, the CIA and Intelligence Bureau had arrived at a rough division of labor. The Indians, with CIA support from the Near East Division, would work together in developing Uban's 5,000-strong tactical guerrilla force. The CIA's Far East Division, meantime, would unilaterally create a strategic long-range resistance movement inside Tibet. The Mustang contingent would also remain under the CIA's unilateral control.

All this would depend on final approval by the highest levels of the Kennedy administration. Meanwhile, the CIA arranged for a sign of good faith. A single crew was selected from the agency's air proprietaries in Taiwan and Japan, then dispatched to Takhli aboard a DC-6 transport. Loaded with an assortment of military aid, the plane made three shuttles between Thailand and the Charbatia airfield near the city of Bhubaneswar in India's eastern state of Orissa. A relic of World War II, Charbatia had fallen into a severe state of disrepair. More remarkable than its poor condition were the precautions taken to keep the CIA's largesse a secret from the die-hard Soviet supporters among New Delhi's political elite. "We flew the last few miles just fifty feet above the ground to avoid radar," said pilot Neese Hicks. "We would land at dawn, eat a fast breakfast, and be back in the air toward Takhli." [28]

By the last week of November, the CIA representatives from the Harriman delegation were back in Washington and making their pitch before the Special Group. Though they could now count on Indian participation -- which had been a prerequisite for future support to the Mustang group -- they had a tough sell. CIA Director McCone, for one, was a pronounced skeptic with relatively little interest in covert paramilitary operations. Citing the example of Mustang (which had done precious little over the past year), he was dubious about the utility of developing a tactical guerrilla force that the United States could not ultimately control. And although officials in New Delhi believed that limited war with China might continue intermittently over a number of years, he questioned what would happen in the event of Sino-Indian rapprochement. Would the CIA have to cut its support to the guerrillas and the resistance in midstream? [29]

There was also sharp criticism from the Pentagon, but for a different reason. General Maxwell Taylor, the president's military adviser who had recently taken over as chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, tore into Critchfield for not informing the Department of Defense about the ongoing paramilitary program at Mustang. Many upcoming contingencies might hinge on the Mustang guerrillas, chided Taylor, and the Pentagon's representatives on the Harriman mission had only belatedly found out about Mustang's existence while in India. Many suspected that Taylor's umbrage was because he had lobbied hard over the past year to have CIA paramilitary operations revert to Defense Department control, and he was livid at finding a holdout.

Despite the comments from the likes of McCone and Taylor, the chance of making significant inroads with the Indians -- and giving a bigger headache to Beijing -- was too good to pass up. On 13 December, the Kennedy administration approved training assistance to Uban's tactical guerrilla force. At the same time, the Tibet Task Force drew up plans to reopen Hale and school at least 125 candidates for the long-range resistance movement. Commented task force chief Knaus, "We had suddenly gone from stepchild to favored son." [30]


For intelligence chief Mullik, the Chakrata project signaled a new sense of militancy regarding Tibet. This was communicated in strong fashion on 29 December when Mullik -- through Gyalo Thondup -- told the Dalai Lama that New Delhi had now adopted a covert policy of supporting the eventual liberation of his homeland.

Although the U.S. government did not match this with a similar pledge, the CIA wasted no time making good on its promise to help with the various Tibetan paramilitary schemes. As a start, Jim McElroy -- the same logistics expert who had been involved with ST CIRCUS since its inception, overseeing the air supply process from Okinawa and later helping with similar requirements at Camp Hale -- was dispatched to India in early January 1963. He was escorted by Intelligence Bureau representatives to the Paratroopers Training School at Agra, just a few kilometers from the breathtaking Taj Mahal palace. Because aerial methods would be the likely method of supporting behind-the-lines operations against the PLA, McElroy began an assessment of the school's parachute inventory to fully understand India's air delivery capabilities. He also started preliminary training of some Tibetan riggers drawn from Chakrata....


[T]he CIA's Near East Division was forging ahead with assistance for the Tibetans at Chakrata. Initially, the Pentagon also muscled its way into the act and in February 1963 penned plans to send a 106-man U.S. Army Special Forces detachment that would offer "overt, but hopefully unpublicized" training in guerrilla tactics and unconventional warfare. The CIA, meanwhile, came up with a competing plan that involved no more than eight of its advisers on a six-month temporary duty assignment. Significantly, the CIA envisioned its officers living and messing alongside the Tibetans, minimizing the need for logistical support. Given Indian sensitivities and the unlikely prospect of keeping an overt U.S. military detachment unpublicized, the CIA scheme won. [4]

Heading the CIA team would be forty-five-year-old Wayne Sanford.....

By now a marine colonel, Sanford was still in London when the Chinese attack materialized and CIA paramilitary support for India was approved in principle in December 1962. Early the following year, after the CIA received specific approval to send eight advisers to Chakrata, Sanford was selected to oversee the effort. He would do so from an office at the U.S. embassy in New Delhi while acting under the official title of special assistant to Ambassador Galbraith. As this would be an overt posting with the full knowledge of the Indian government, both he and the seven other paramilitary advisers would remain segregated from David Blee's CIA station.

Back in Washington, the rest of the team took shape. Another former marine, John Magerowski, was fast to grab a berth. So was Harry Mustakos, who had worked with the Tibetans on Saipan in 1957 and served with Sanford on Da Chen. Former smoke jumper and Intermountain Aviation (a CIA proprietary) rigger Thomas "T. J." Thompson was to replace Jim McElroy at Agra. Two other training officers were selected from the United States, and a third was diverted from an assignment in Turkey. The last slot went to former U.S. Army airborne officer Charles "Ken" Seifarth, who had been in South Vietnam conducting jump class for agents destined to infiltrate the communist north. [7]

By mid-April, the eight had assembled in New Delhi. If they expected war greetings from their CIA colleagues in the embassy, it did not happen. "We were neither welcomed nor wanted by the station chief," recalls Mustakos. For Sanford, this was eventually seen as a plus. "Blee gave me a free hand," he remembered, "but Galbraith wanted detailed weekly briefings on everything we did." [8]

At the outset, there was little for Sanford to report. Waiting for their gear to arrive (they had ordered plenty of cold-weather clothing), the team members spent their first days agreeing on a syllabus for the upcoming six months. One week later, their supplies arrived, and six of the advisers left Sanford in New Delhi for the chilled air of Chakrata. The last member, Thompson, alone went to Agra.

Once the CIA advisers arrived at the mountain training site, Brigadier Uban gave them a fast tour. A ridgeline ran east to west, with Chakrata occupying saddle in the middle. Centered in the saddle was a polo field that fell off sharp to the south for 600 meters, then less sharply for another 300 meters. North of the field was a scattering of stone houses and shops, all remnants of the colonial era and now home to a handful of hill tribesmen who populated the village.

To the immediate west of the saddle was an old but sound stone Anglican church. Farther west were stone bungalows previously used by British officers and their dependents. Most of the bungalows were similar, differing only in the number of bedrooms. Each had eighteen-inch stone walls, narrow windows, fireplaces in each room, stone floors, and a solarium facing south to trap the heat on cold days and warm the rest of the drafty house. Each CIA adviser and India officer took a bungalow, with the largest going to Brigadier Uban. [9]

East of the saddle was a series of stone barracks built by the British a century earlier and more recently used by the two Gurkha regiments. These were now holding the Tibetan recruits. There was also a longer stone building once used as a hospital, a firing range, and a walled cemetery overgrown by cedar....

Once fully settled, the CIA team was introduced to its guerrilla students. By that time, the Chakrata project had been given an official name. A decade earlier, Brigadier Uban had had a posting in command of the 22nd Mountain Regiment in Assam. Borrowing that number, he gave his Tibetans the ambiguous title of "Establishment 22."

In reviewing Establishment 22, the Americans were immediately struck by the age of the Tibetans. Although there was a sprinkling of younger recruits, nearly half were older than forty-five; some were even approaching sixty. Jamba Kalden, the chief political leader, was practically a child at forty-three. As had happened with the Mustang guerrillas, the older generation, itching for a final swing at the Chinese, had used its seniority to edge out younger candidates during the recruitment drive in the refugee camps. [11]

With much material to cover, the CIA advisers reviewed what the Indian staff had accomplished over the previous few months. Uban had initially focused his efforts on instilling a modicum of discipline, which he feared might be an impossible task. To his relief, this fear proved unfounded. The Tibetans immediately controlled their propensity for drinking and gambling at his behest; the brigadier encouraged dancing and chanting as preferable substitutes to fill their leisure time. [12]

The Indians had also started a strict regimen of physical exercise, including extended marches across the nearby hills. Because the weather varied widely -- snow blanketed the northern slopes, but the spring sun was starting to bake the south -- special care was taken to avoid pneumonia. In addition to exercise, the Indians had offered a sampling of tactical instruction. But most of it, the CIA team found, reflected a conventional mind-set. "We had to unteach quite a bit," said Mustakos. [13]

This combination -- strict exercise and a crash course in guerrilla tactics -- continued through the first week of May. At that point, classes were put on temporary hold in order to initiate airborne training. Plans called for nearly all members of Establishment 22 to be qualified as paratroopers. This made tactical sense: if the Tibetans were to operate behind Chinese lines, the logical means of infiltrating them to the other side of the Himalayas would be by parachute.

When told of the news, the Tibetans were extremely enthusiastic about the prospect of jumping. There was a major problem, however. Establishment 22 remained a secret not only from the general Indian public but also from the bulk of the Indian military. The only airborne training facilities in India were at Agra, where the CIA's T. J. Thompson was discreetly training a dozen Tibetan riggers. Because the Agra school ran jump training for the Indian army's airborne brigade, Thompson had been forced to keep the twelve well concealed. But doing the same for thousands of Tibetans would be impossible; unless careful steps were taken, the project could be exposed.

Part of the CIA's dilemma was solved by the season. The weather in the Indian lowlands during May was starting to get oppressively hot, making the dusty Agra drop zones less than popular with the airborne brigade. Most of the Tibetan jumps were intentionally scheduled around noon -- the least popular time slot, because the sun was directly overhead. The Intelligence Bureau also arranged for the Tibetans to use crude barracks in a distant corner of the air base, further reducing the chance of an encounter with inquisitive paratroopers.

As an added precaution, a member of Brigadier Uban's staff went to an insignia shop and placed an order for cap badges. Each badge featured crossed kukri knife blades with the number 12 above. The reason: after independence from the British, the Indian army had inherited seven regiments of famed Gurkhas recruited from neighboring Nepal. Along with four more regiments that transferred to the British army, the regiments were numbered sequentially, with the last being the 11th Gorkha (the Indian spelling of Gurkha) Rifles. On the assumption that most lowland Indians would be unable to differentiate between the Asian features of a Gurkha and those of a Tibetan, Establishment 22 was given the fictitious cover designation "12th Gorkha Rifles" for the duration of its stay at Agra. [14]

To oversee the airborne phase of instruction, Ken Seifarth relocated to Agra. Five jumps were planned for each candidate, including one performed at night. Because of the limited size of the barracks at the air base, the Tibetans would rotate down to the lowlands in 100-man cycles. With up to three jumps conducted each day, the entire qualification process was expected to stretch through the summer.

All was going according to plan until the evening before the first contingent was scheduled to jump. At that point, a message arrived reminding Uban that the Indian military would not accept liability for anyone older than thirty-five parachuting; in the event of death or injury, the government would not pay compensation. This put Uban in a major fix. It was vital for his staff to share training hazards with their students, and he had assumed that his officers -- none of whom were airborne qualified -- would jump alongside the Tibetans. But although they had all completed the ground phase of instruction (which had intentionally been kept simple, such as leaping off ledges into piles of hay), his men had been under the impression that they would not have to jump from an aircraft. Their lack of enthusiasm was now reinforced by the government's denial of compensation. When Uban asked for volunteers to accompany the guerrilla trainees, not a single Indian officer stepped forward. [15]

For Uban, it was now a question of retaining the confidence of the Tibetans or relinquishing his command. Looking to get special permission for government risk coverage, he phoned Mullik that evening. The intelligence director, however, was not at home. Taking what he considered the only other option, Uban gathered his officers for an emergency session. Although he had no prior parachute training, he told his men that he intended to be the first one out of the lead aircraft. This challenge proved hard to ignore. When the brigadier again asked for volunteers, every officer stepped forward.

Uban now faced a new problem. With the first jump set for early the next morning, he had a single evening to learn the basics. He summoned a pair of CIA advisers to his room in Agra's Clarkes Shiraz Hotel. Using the limited resources at hand, they put the tea table in the middle of the room and watched as the brigadier rolled uncomfortably across the floor.

Imaging the likely result of an actual jump, Seifarth spoke his mind. At forty-seven years old, he was a generation older than his CIA teammates and just a year younger than Uban. Drawing on the close rapport they had developed over the previous weeks, he implored the brigadier to reconsider. [16]

The next morning, 11 May, a C-119 Flying Boxcar crossed the skies over Agra. As the twin-tailed transport aircraft came over the drop zone, Uban was the first out the door, Seifarth the second. Landing without incident, the brigadier belatedly received a return call from Mullik. "Don't jump," said the intelligence chief. "Too late," was the response. [17]

In the weeks that followed, the rest of Establishment 22 clamored for their opportunity to leap from an aircraft. "Even cooks and drivers demanded to go," recalled Uban. Nobody was rejected for age or health reasons, including one Tibetan who had lost an eye and another who was so small that he had to strap a sandbag to his chest to deploy the chute properly. [18]

Nehru, meanwhile, was receiving regular updates on the progress at Chakrata. During autumn, with the deployment of the eight-man CIA team almost finished, he was invited to make an inspection visit to the hill camp. The Intelligence Bureau also passed a request asking the prime minister to use the opportunity to address the guerrillas directly. Nehru was sympathetic but cautious. The thought of the prime minister addressing Tibetan combatants on Indian soil had the makings of a diplomatic disaster if word leaked. Afraid of adverse publicity, he agreed to visit the camp but refused to give a speech.

Hearing this news, Uban had the men of Establishment 22 undergo a fast lesson in parade drill. The effort paid off. Though stiff and formal when he arrived on 14 November, Nehru was visibly moved when he saw the Tibetans in formation. And knowing that the prime minister was soft for roses, Uban presented him with a brilliant red blossom plucked from a garden he had planted on the side of his stone bungalow. Nehru buckled. Asking for a microphone, the prime minister poured forth some ad hoc and heartfelt comments to the guerrillas. "He said that India backed them," said Uban, "and vowed they would one day return to an independent country." [19]


At the beginning of the second week of November, the SFF [the Special Frontier Force] began Operation EAGLE. Taking leave of Demagiri, the guerrillas used nineteen canoes to shuttle across the Karnaphuli River and steal into East Pakistan. Coming upon an outpost that night, the Tibetans overran the position while the Pakistanis were eating. Boosted by their swift victory, they made plans to hit the next post the following morning.

Listening over the radio, General Uban was anxious. As he moved into Demagiri to coordinate both the SFF and his Bangladeshi force, he had few qualms about the Bangladeshis -- they were native boys and could live off the land -- but he knew that the Tibetans were untested under battle conditions and careless in open march.

Very quickly, his fears were confirmed. On 14 November, the lead element of Tibetans came running back toward the Indian border. Dhondup Gyatotsang, Uban learned, had been shot dead. The cousin of Mustang commander Wangdu and a Hale graduate, Dhondup had been one of the most senior political leaders in the force. Realizing that he could lose momentum, Uban got on the radio and barked at the Tibetans to resume their advance. "I told them not to come back until the position was taken," he said. [26]

The strong words had an effect. Reversing course, the SFF split into small teams and curled behind the Pakistanis in classic guerrilla fashion. Using both their Bulgarian assault rifles and native knives, they smashed through the outpost. "After that," remembers Uban, "they were unstoppable." [27]

By the time all-out war was officially declared early the following month, the SFF had been inside East Pakistan for three weeks. Multiple Indian corps blitzed from all directions on 3 December, forcing Pakistani capitulation within two weeks; Bangladesh's independence would soon follow. [28]

At the time of the ceasefire, the Tibetans were within forty kilometers of Chittagong port and had successfully pinned down the Pakistani brigade in the border hills. Taking leave of their normal anonymity, the SFF paraded through Chittagong to ecstatic Bangladeshi masses. A total of twenty- three Indian officers and forty-five Tibetans would be awarded for their gallantry; 580 Tibetans received cash bonuses. Their victory had had a cost, however. Forty-nine Tibetans had paid with their lives for the birth of a nation not their own.

Fallout from the Bangladeshi operation was swift. The CIA lodged a protest against the RAW [Intentionally patterned after the CIA, the Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) was officially unveiled on 2 September; both the foreign intelligence desk of the Intelligence Bureau (now downgraded to domestic activities) and the paramilitary projects of the director general of security would fall under RAW's control; selected as the first RAW director was New Delhi Veteran intelligence officer Rameshwar Nath Kao] over the use of the Tibetans in Operation EAGLE. Director Kao hardly lost any sleep over the matter; with U.S. financial and advisory support to the SFF all but evaporated, the agency's leverage was nil. Bolstering his indifference was the diplomatic furor over deployment of the U.S. aircraft carrier Enterprise to the Bay of Bengal during the brief war. Although Washington claimed that the vessel was there for the potential evacuation of U.S. citizens from Dacca, New Delhi suspected that it had been sent as a show of support for the Pakistanis. Bilateral ties, never good during the Nixon presidency, ebbed even lower.

More serious were the protests against Operation EAGLE from within the Tibetan refugee community. In this instance, it was Dharamsala that was under fire, not the RAW. Facing mounting criticism for having approved the deployment, the Dalai Lama made a secret journey to Chakrata on 3 June 1972. After three days of blessings, most ill feelings had wafted away.

As this was taking place, John Bellingham was approaching the end of his tour at the Special Center. He had just delivered the second installment of rehabilitation funds, which arrived in Nepal without complication. With this money, two Pokhara carpet factories had been established, and construction of a hotel in the same town was progressing according to plan. Another carpet factory was operating in Kathmandu, as was a taxi and trucking company.

By the summer of 1973, with one-third of the funds still to be distributed, the CIA opted not to deploy a new representative to the Special Center. Because Bellingham had moved next door as the CIA's chief of station in Kathmandu, and because he was already intimately familiar with the demobilization program, it was decided to send him the Indian rupees in a diplomatic pouch for direct handover to designated Tibetans in Nepal. Although this violated the agency's previous taboo against involving the Kathmandu station, an exception was deemed suitable in this case, given the humanitarian nature of the project.

The money was well spent. That November, ex-guerrillas formally opened their Pokhara hotel, the Annapurna Guest House. Bellingham and his wife were among its first patrons. [1]


Although all the promised funds had been distributed, the CIA was not celebrating. Wangdu had dipped into extra money saved over previous years, defied orders to completely close the project, and retained six companies -- 600 men -- spread across Mustang. Worst of all, not a single weapon had been handed back.

All this was happening as a new set of geopolitical realities was conspiring against the Tibetans. President Nixon, besides having frosty relations with India, was dedicated to normalizing ties with the PRC. In February 1972, he traveled to Beijing and discussed this possibility with Chinese leaders, who were slowly distancing themselves from the self-inflicted wounds of their Cultural Revolution. Although the phaseout of Mustang was not directly linked to this visit -- as many Tibetans have incorrectly speculated -- it is equally true that Washington had little patience for a continued Mustang sideshow, given the massive stakes involved with Sino-U.S. rapprochement.

-- The CIA's Secret War in Tibet, by Kenneth Conboy and James Morrison

Later career

With the permission of the Dalai Lama, Thondup met Chinese leader Deng Xiaoping in 1979 for open political talks, which Thondup terminated in 1993, feeling them to be useless.[4] In the 1990s, Thondup made several official visits to China, acting as the Dalai Lama's unofficial envoy.[2] In recent years, Thondup has repeatedly stated that dialogue is the only way to achieve progress with China.[11] In 1998, the Central Tibetan Administration (the political arm of the Dalai Lama's anti-China diaspora faction) criticized Thondup for not letting the Dalai Lama know about the CIA's involvement in Tibet.[10] Over a decade later, Thondup accused his sister-in-law's father of embezzling money from the Central Tibetan Administration.[12]

See also

• Thubten Norbu


• (with Anne F. Thurston), The Noodle Maker of Kalimpong: The Untold Story of the Dalai Lama and the Secret Struggle for Tibet, PublicAffairs, 2015


1. Thurston, Anne F. (2015). The Noodle Maker of Kalimpong: The Untold Story of My Struggle for Tibet (1st ed.). Gurgaon: Random House India. p. 16. ISBN 978-81-8400-387-1.
2. "Dalai Lama's Older Brother Visits China". Voice of America. October 26, 2009.
3. Thurston, Anne F. (2015). The Noodle Maker of Kalimpong: The Untold Story of My Struggle Tibet (1st ed.). Gurgaon: Random House India. p. 11. ISBN 978-81-8400-387-1.
4. "Gyalo Thondup: Interview Excerpts". The Wall Street Journal. Feb 20, 2009.
5. 1953-, Laird, Thomas, (2006). The story of Tibet : conversations with the Dalai Lama. Bstan-ʼdzin-rgya-mtsho, Dalai Lama XIV, 1935- (1st ed.). New York: Grove Press. p. 288. ISBN 9780802143273. OCLC 63165009. "From the 1950's until today, Gyalo Thondup, who speaks fluent Chinese, Tibetan, and English, has occasionally been sought out by Taiwanese, Chinese, British, and American officials in an attempt to contact the Dalai Lama. Beginning in 1946, Chiang Kai-shel groomed him for this role. In fact, young Gyalo Thondup ate his meals at the Chiang family table, from April 1947 until the summer of 1949, and tutors selected by Chiang educated the boy.
6. Dotson, Brandon; Gurung, Kalsang Norbu; Halkias, Georgios; Myatt, Tim, eds. (2009). Contemporary visions in Tibetan studies: Proceedings of the First International Seminar of Young Tibetologists. Chicago: Serindia Publications. p. 158. ISBN 9781932476453.
7. Goldstein, Melvyn (2007). A History of Modern Tibet: The Calm Before the Storm, 1951-1955. University of California Press. pp. 236–240.
8. On the CIA's links to the Dalai Lama and his family and entourage, see Loren Coleman, Tom Slick and the Search for the Yeti (London: Faber and Faber, 1989).
9. Sautman, Barry (1 March 2010). "Tibet's Putative Statehood and International Law". Chinese Journal of International Law. Oxford University Press. 9 (1): 127–142. Indeed, after the 1962 war, B.N. Mullik, India's Intelligence Bureau Chief, told Gyalo Thondup, the Dalai Lama's brother and a top CIA asset, that India supported Tibet's “eventual liberation”.
10. "Tibet rules out Lama links with CIA". The Indian Express. October 3, 1998. Archived from the original on November 5, 2013.
11. "Former Minister Gyalo Thondup Says Weiqun Ignorant of Deng's statement on Tibet". Voice of America. Retrieved 3 November 2013.
12. Mishra, Pankaj (2015-12-01). "The Last Dalai Lama?". The New York Times. Retrieved 2015-12-15.
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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

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P. N. [Parappil-Narayana] Menon (diplomat)
by Wikipedia
Accessed: 11/26/19




Parappil-Narayana Menon (1920- 22 June 1975),[1] also known as P.N. Menon, was a career diplomat in the Indian Foreign Service. Like his father-in-law, he undertook an overland journey to Lhasa in 1956, on foot and on horseback through the formidable Nathula Pass, to take up his post as India's Consult-General in Tibet. [2]

Personal life

He was married to Malini, the daughter of first Foreign Secretary of India, K.P.S. Menon.[3] His son is Shivshankar Menon, who as of 2011 was the National Security Advisor to the Prime Minister of India.

Kumara Padma Sivasankara Menon Sr. CIE ICS (18 October 1898 – 22 November 1982), usually known as K. P. S. Menon, was a diplomat and diarist, a career member of the Indian Civil Service. He was appointed independent India's first Foreign Secretary, serving from 1948 to 1952.

He was Dewan (Prime Minister) of Bharatpur State, Ambassador of India to the Soviet Union from 1952 to 1961, and finally Ambassador to the People's Republic of China. In 1948, preceding events of the Korean War, the United Nations appointed him the Chairman of the UN Commission on Korea (UNCOK).

Menon's overland trip from Delhi to Chungking across the Himalayas, the Karakorams and the Pamirs during the Second World War was recorded in his book Delhi-Chungking: A Travel Diary (1947). He was a signatory on behalf of India at the formation of the United Nations. He was a member of the Royal Central Asian Society....

Menon married Saraswathi Amma, the daughter of C. Sankaran Nair. His son, who bore the same name as him, served as envoy to China and his maternal grandson Shivshankar Menon was the Foreign Secretary and later the National Security Advisor.

Menon was awarded the Padma Bhushan in 1958 and the Lenin Peace Prize.

-- K. P. S. [Kumara Padma Sivasankara] Menon, by Wikipedia

The International Lenin Peace Prize (Russian: международная Ленинская премия мира, mezhdunarodnaya Leninskaya premiya mira) was a Soviet Union award named in honor of Vladimir Lenin. It was awarded by a panel appointed by the Soviet government, to notable individuals whom the panel indicated had "strengthened peace among comrades". It was founded as the International Stalin Prize for Strengthening Peace Among Peoples, but was renamed the International Lenin Prize for Strengthening Peace Among Peoples (Russian: Международная Ленинская премия «За укрепление мира между народами», Mezhdunarodnaya Leninskaya premiya «za ukrepleniye mira mezhdu narodami») as a result of de-Stalinization. Unlike the Nobel Prize, the Lenin Peace Prize was usually awarded to several people a year rather than to just one individual. The prize was mainly awarded to prominent Communists and supporters of the Soviet Union who were not Soviet citizens. Notable recipients include: W. E. B. Du Bois, Fidel Castro, Salvador Allende, Mikis Theodorakis, Seán MacBride, Angela Davis, Pablo Picasso, Oscar Niemeyer, Faiz Ahmad Faiz, Abdul Sattar Edhi and Nelson Mandela.

-- Lenin Peace Prize, by Wikipedia

Maternal Grandchild: the child of a woman's daughter: a grandchild to whom one is the maternal grandmother.

-- Maternal-Grandchild, by

Civil service

P.N. Menon first joined the Indian Foreign Service in 1947.[4] At one point, he served as Consul-General of India in Lhasa, and later served as intermediary to the young Dalai Lama during the 1959 Tibetan uprising.[5][6][7][8] He died while serving as ambassador to Greece and Yugoslavia in Belgrade.[9]

Posts held

• War Service Officer, 1947
• Consul-General of India, Lhasa, October 1954-November 1956
• First Secretary, Indian Embassy, Rome, April 1957-May 1958
• Consul-General of India, Damascus, June 1958-February 1959
• Director (External Publicity), MEA, 1959–62
• Consul-General, San Francisco, 1962–65
• Ambassador to Cambodia, 1965–68
• Joint Secretary, Additional Secretary and Secretary, MEA, 1968–72
• Ambassador to Yugoslavia and Greece -1975


1. Almanac of Current World Leaders Biography & News: ii. September 1975. Missing or empty |title= (help)
2. K.P.S. Menon, Sr (1979). Memories and Musings. p. 310.
3. K.P.S. Menon (1981). Many Worlds Revisited. p. 276.
4. Selected Works of Jawaharlal Nehru, Series II Volume 33, p. 479, footnote 16
5. Roger E. McCarthy (1997). Tears of the Lotus. p. 208.
6. Tséring Shakya (1999). The dragon in the land of snows: a history of modern Tibet since 1947. p. 215.
7. John Kenneth Knaus (1999). Orphans of the Cold War: America and the Tibetan struggle for survival. p. 172.
8. Raja Hutheesing (1960). Tibet fights for freedom: the story of the March 1959 uprising as recorded in documents, despatches [sic] eye-witness accounts and world-wide reactions. p. 84.
9. K.P.S. Menon, Sr (1979). Memories and Musings. p. 310.
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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

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K. P. S. [Kumar Padma Sivasankara] Menon
by Wikipedia
Accessed: 11/26/19



Kumar Padma Sivasankara Menon
Foreign Secretary
In office: 1948–1952
Monarch: George VI
Preceded by: Sir Hugh Weightman
Succeeded by: R. K. Nehru
Preceded by: Sir Olaf Caroe


Sir. – Recent devastating events in Tibet caused over 15,000 Tibetans to cross the perilous Himalayas into India. It may be a long time before these unfortunate people can safely return to their overrun country. Our own consciences should allow us neither to neglect nor forget them.

The Indian Government has manfully coped with this addition to its own problems at home. In this country we are bound in honour to help relieve needs of the Tibetan refugees, because from 1905 to 1947 there was a special relationship between Tibet and the United Kingdom – a relationship handed on to the new India.

On balance we think it wisest to concentrate chiefly on collecting money which can be used for the benefit of the refugees, not least in the purchase of necessary antibiotics and other medicaments. The Tibet Society has opened a Tibet Relief Fund for which we now appeal in the hope of a generous response. Donations should be sent to the address below or direct to the National Bank Ltd. (Belgravia Branch), 21 Grosvenor Gardens, S.W.I.

Yours faithfully,

... [Indian Foreign Secretary Sir] Olaf Caroe ... The Tibet Relief Fund, 58 Eccleston Square, S.W. I., Letter to the Times, July 31, 1959, p.7.

-- Tibet Society, by

Preceded by: Lt-Gen Thomas Jacomb Hutton
Personal details
Born: Kumara Padma Sivasankara Menon, 18 October 1898, Travancore, British India
Died: 22 November 1982 (aged 84), Ottapalam, Kerala, India
Spouse(s) Saraswathi Amma
Occupation: Diplomat

Kumara Padma Sivasankara Menon Sr. CIE ICS (18 October 1898 – 22 November 1982), usually known as K. P. S. Menon, was a diplomat and diarist, a career member of the Indian Civil Service. He was appointed independent India's first Foreign Secretary, serving from 1948 to 1952.

He was Dewan (Prime Minister) of Bharatpur State, Ambassador of India to the Soviet Union from 1952 to 1961, and finally Ambassador to the People's Republic of China. In 1948, preceding events of the Korean War, the United Nations appointed him the Chairman of the UN Commission on Korea (UNCOK).[1]

Menon's overland trip from Delhi to Chungking across the Himalayas, the Karakorams and the Pamirs during the Second World War was recorded in his book Delhi-Chungking: A Travel Diary (1947).[2] He was a signatory on behalf of India at the formation of the United Nations. He was a member of the Royal Central Asian Society.[3]

Early life

K. P. S. Menon was born in Travancore, British India, in 1898 in a distinguished aristocratic family. His father Kumara Menon was a lawyer from Ottapalam. His mother Janaki Amma came from Vellayani near Thiruvananthapuram in Travancore, a niece of Kesava Pillai of Kandamath and cousin of Neyyattinkara N. K. Padmanabha Pillai. Upon her marriage to Kumara Menon,in a previously unprecedented manner (see Matrilineality in Kerala society), she moved to Kottayam to set up house with Kumara Menon who himself had moved away from his family in Ottapalam.[4] The children were also given titles from their father's side and not from the mother's side. He attended Madras Christian College and then Christ Church, University of Oxford,[5] where he was a contemporary of the future Prime Minister Anthony Eden and served as co-officers of the Asiatic Society. He served as the president of the Oxford Majlis Asian Society.[6][page needed] He was admitted to the Middle Temple on 30 November 1918,[7] but withdrew without being Called to the Bar on 15 March 1928.

Public service career

In 1922, Menon secured the first rank in the combined Civil Services Examination and joined the ICS.[8] He served as Sub-Collector of Tirupattur, Vellore District, then as District Magistrate in Trichy, Agent of the Government of India in the North West Frontier Province and Ceylon, then as Resident General of India in Hyderabad State. In 1934, he was sent as Crown Representative to investigate the state of Indians in Zanzibar, Kenya and Uganda. As Dewan of Bharatpur State, he was appointed a Companion of the Order of the Indian Empire in the New Year Honours of 1943.[9] After independence, he was India's first Foreign Secretary from 1948 to 1952, then Ambassador of India to the Soviet Union, Hungary and Poland from 1952 to 1961 and Ambassador to China.[10] [11]

Menon married Saraswathi Amma, the daughter of C. Sankaran Nair.[12] His son, who bore the same name as him, served as envoy to China and his maternal grandson Shivshankar Menon was the Foreign Secretary and later the National Security Advisor.[13][10]

Menon was awarded the Padma Bhushan in 1958[14] and the Lenin Peace Prize.[5]

The International Lenin Peace Prize (Russian: международная Ленинская премия мира, mezhdunarodnaya Leninskaya premiya mira) was a Soviet Union award named in honor of Vladimir Lenin. It was awarded by a panel appointed by the Soviet government, to notable individuals whom the panel indicated had "strengthened peace among comrades". It was founded as the International Stalin Prize for Strengthening Peace Among Peoples, but was renamed the International Lenin Prize for Strengthening Peace Among Peoples (Russian: Международная Ленинская премия «За укрепление мира между народами», Mezhdunarodnaya Leninskaya premiya «za ukrepleniye mira mezhdu narodami») as a result of de-Stalinization. Unlike the Nobel Prize, the Lenin Peace Prize was usually awarded to several people a year rather than to just one individual. The prize was mainly awarded to prominent Communists and supporters of the Soviet Union who were not Soviet citizens. Notable recipients include: W. E. B. Du Bois, Fidel Castro, Salvador Allende, Mikis Theodorakis, Seán MacBride, Angela Davis, Pablo Picasso, Oscar Niemeyer, Faiz Ahmad Faiz, Abdul Sattar Edhi and Nelson Mandela.

-- Lenin Peace Prize, by Wikipedia


Menon's published writings include:[15]

• Many Worlds: An Autobiography
• Many Worlds Revisited - updated autobiography
• Delhi-Chungking: A Travel Diary (1947)
• Russian Panorama
• The Friendship of Great Peoples (1962)
• The Flying Troika (1963)
• The Resurgence of India: Reformation Or Revolution? Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Memorial Lectures (1963)
• India & the Cold War (1966)
• Journey Round the World (1966)
• Biography of Sir Chettur Sankaran Nair
• Lenin through Indian Eyes (1970)
• Russia Revisited (1971)
• The Lamp and the Lampstand
• Twilight in China (1972)
• The Indo-Soviet Treaty: Setting & Sequel (1972)
• A Diplomat Speaks (1974)
• Yesterday and Today (1975) - a collection of articles, illustrated by Abu Abraham
• Changing Patterns of Diplomacy- Dr. Saiyidain Memorial Lectures (1977)
• Memories and Musings (1979)
• One Thousand Full Moons (Published posthumously in 1987)


1. ... 87646.html
2. Menon, K. P. S. Delhi Chungking.
3. Menon, K. P. S. Many Worlds.
4. K. P. S. Menon in K.P.S. Menon, Sr (1979). Memories and Musings. p. 310.
5. "K. P. S. Menon". Mahatma Gandhi University. Archived from the original on 2 November 2011.
6. Menon in Many World Revisited, Bhavan, Bombay,1981
7. Sturgess, H. A. C. (1949). Register of Admissions to the Honourable Society of the Middle Temple(PDF). 3. Butterworth. p. 830.
8. "No. 32763". The London Gazette. 3 November 1922. p. 7802.
9. "No. 35841". The London Gazette. 29 December 1942. p. 7.
10. "Menon is next NSA". The Hindu. 21 January 2010. Retrieved 29 November 2011.
11. See Introduction in Patel Memorial Lectures, Publications Division Government of India March 1963
12. "Succession of diplomats from Palat family". The Hindu. 1 September 2006. Retrieved 30 November 2011.
13. "S S Menon, who served in Israel, China and Pak, is new Foreign Secy". Indian Express. 1 September 2006. Retrieved 30 November 2011.
14. "Padma Awards" (PDF). Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India. 2015. Archived from the original (PDF) on 15 November 2014. Retrieved 21 July 2015.
15. Front Cover of Title Page, Memories and Musings, last work written. See K. P. S. Menon,Memories and Musings, Allied Publishers, New Delhi 1979
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