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China trying to turn religion into a political vehicle

N24 Correspondent, KATHMANDU: Buddhist politics is gaining currency as far as China is concerned. Come next month there are two Buddhist events apparently sponsored by China.

One of the event is being graced by UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon and is expected to bolster Chinese influence in Nepal than anything else.

The latest comes in the wake of growing disenchantment among Tibetans inside China and are resenting tough measures imposed on Tibetans.

Chinese have perfected the art of surveillance by placing cameras on monasteries while deploying security personnel too. Monasteries like Drepung, Sera and Kirti since February this year have been virtual fortress.

A sign of their desperation was shockingly manifest for the first time in Delhi on March 26, on the eve of Chinese President Hu Jintao’s arrival for the BRICS summit, when a 26-year-old Tibetan refugee immolated himself.

Meanwhile the three day ‘international’ event in the Buddha’s birthplace of Lumbini, which opens on April 28, has as its prime movers Prachanda.

During his visit, Ban ki Moon, who is to be accompanied by UNESCO director-general Irina Bokova, will co-chair an international conference on Lumbini with UCPN-Maoist Chairman Prachanda.

An International Peace Conference is also scheduled to be held in Lumbini on April 30. Nepal has, incidentally, declared 2012 as ‘Visit Lumbini Year’.

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