By Lobsang Kyizom
The ordeals in an ordinary student’s life are unfamiliar to not many of minds, I believe. Those realms of time when you are not only expected to learn and explore new things but, somehow, also have them put into practice throughout your real life. But, such as the ones, that a diasporic number of students in exile like the Tibetan students around the world is acquiesced with, almost in a diurnal basis, is however less known and sadly far less understood.
Being informed about the 9th Tibetan College Students’ Conference by a friend was the first step towards this realization. I decided to attend the conference which was to be held in DLIHE, Bangalore intuitively, without a mere second thought.
TCSC is a collaboration of Tibetan students pursuing their higher studies in different parts of India. Ever since its inception in 2006, the conference has been organised annually in different locations across India, solely by the efforts of the students. TCSC has provided a forum for the Tibetan college students to identify with each other, share their experiences and challenges faced as a refugee student and discuss ways to resolve it.
Personally, after getting alienated to a campus in Bangalore with hardly few Tibetans around had long left in me an ensuing effect of putridity upon my national identity. Yet, from the moment, I stepped inside DLIHE, a strange feeling of bliss and belongingness overpowered my whole being as I settled into a familiar atmosphere. The first day of the conference was addressed by Choepa Kyap, the Chief Organiser of the year 2014 and Dr. Bhumo Tsering, The Principal of DLIHE. The opening ceremony witnessed dignitaries like Jigmey Jungney and KS Rangappa, Vice Chancellor, University of Mysore with conferment of Bodkyi Ama Award to Ama Jetsun Pema as a symbol of gratitude for her unbounded contribution to our society and The TCSC Award to MN Rajesh for his support towards the Tibetan cause.
The following days, the students’ representatives from each place had to come up with their presentations on the topics allotted by the organizers. The decree to speak in the mother tongue without getting it alloyed with other languages was made and practiced strictly, emphasizing on the importance of the Tibetan language in the struggle of Tibet and in the survival of Tibetan culture and tradition in exile. Many conscientious participants raised their opinions and suggestions to the benefit of the people, sometimes even with prolonged debate between the two counterparts.