While the Dalai Lama, Tenzin Gyatso, marks his fiftieth year as a Tibetan refugee in India, in his Tibetan capital-in-exile, Mcleodganj in Himachal Pradesh, it is business as usual.
The parliament-in-exile and its bureaucratic satrap have been putting together a budget for the current fiscal -- a sum of Rs 103 crore (Rs 1.03 billion) that will be spent on the administration and welfare of a community that numbers 1.4 lakh (140,000) today.
Going through the budget, the 'officials' are keen to point out its salient features. Among their new ventures is exploring options to set up an independent co-cooperative bank to make credit more accessible for themselves, plans to set up BPOs (business process outsourcing units) in the refugee settlements to provide employment to graduate Tibetans and make organic agriculture the norm for the community.
Image: Exiled Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama laughs during a news conference in Santa Barbara, California. | Photograph: Phil Klein/Reuters
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