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China knows power of Dalai Lama's position: Author

Press Trust of India  |  New York 

wants to install its own as it is astute enough to recognise power of his position as an instrument of great influence as long as he is amenable to their commands, an Indian-American and of the Tibetan has said.

Mayank Chhaya's remarks came as the 60th anniversary of the Dalai Lama's escape to from is marked this week.

Chicago-based Chhaya is the of the critically-acclaimed 2007 biography of the titled Dalai Lama: Man, Monk, '

The book has since been published in over 20 languages around the world as well as audio books. An updated new biography titled The Dnouement: The 14th Dalai Lama's Life of Persistence' has just been released and contains four new chapters and a new epilogue bringing up to date until January, 2019 the life and teachings of the

In the updated biography, Chhaya explains why he thinks is interested in the idea of retaining the figure of the as long as the next one is of its own choosing and not the one through which the 14th reincarnates.

"The Chinese leadership is sharp enough to recognise the power of the figure of the Dalai Lama as an instrument of great influence as long as he is amenable to their commands," Chhaya told in an interview.

In his book he mentions that "not willing or able or both to deal with the currently living Dalai Lama, insists that he must reincarnate after his death, presumably as a pliable 15th Dalai Lama.

The 14th Dalai Lama, who is arguably the most popular and consequential in the tradition's history, is much more inclined to end his lineage and preempt reincarnation.

"In a bizarre believe-it-or-not twist to the question of whether the Dalai Lama should reincarnate, now seems to insist that he must but as a sort of made-to-order successor who could be shaped and conditioned to accept complete Chinese control over and Tibetans, he writes in the book.

"Even as the does not accept the concept of Dalai as an old institution and is particularly contemptuous towards the current one, it is astute enough to recognize the political and cultural consequence of having a Dalai Lama in place as long as he is the kind they can run as their operative. It would not mind some return to as long as it is this Dalai Lama-free," Chhaya writes in his book.

Chhaya has been engaged with the Tibetan issue, particularly from the standpoint of the Tibetan refugees in and the Dalai Lama, since 1996. During the course of researching for his book, Chhaya has spent several hours in personal interviews with the Dalai Lama and over the years has kept up with his travels, engagements, speeches and pronouncements.

Since he left in 1959 to escape from the Chinese occupation, the Dalai Lama, 83, has been keeping on tenterhooks about his successor.

China says that the successor to the Dalai Lama must be chosen according to the religious rituals and historical conventions as well as the backing from the ruling Communist Party.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Fri, March 15 2019. 13:40 IST