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India reiterated its stance on the Dalai Lama’s position, emphasising his “revered” status and the respect accorded to him by the Indian people.

“I would like to reiterate India’s position on His Holiness Dalai Lama. He is a revered religious leader and is deeply respected by the people of India. His Holiness is accorded due courtesies and freedom to conduct his religious and spiritual activities,” stated Randhir Jaiswal, spokesperson for the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA).

Mr Jaiswal’s comments came, during a weekly briefing, in response to queries regarding India’s stance on the succession of the Dalai Lama, highlighting the spiritual leader’s significant role in India’s cultural fabric.

Delving into recent diplomatic engagements, Mr Jaiswal provided insights into the visit of a high-level United States Congressional delegation to India from June 16 to 20. Led by Michael McCaul, Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, the seven-member US delegation visited Dharamshala on June 18 and 19.

“They also had a call on to the Prime Minister (Narendra Modi). They also met the External Affairs Minister (S Jaishankar) and the Commerce and Industry Minister (Piyush Goyal),” Mr Jaiswal added, underlining the discussions held during the visit.

The visit underscored ongoing bilateral exchanges and strategic dialogues between India and the United States, encompassing various facets of mutual interest including regional security and economic cooperation.

A bipartisan US Congressional delegation led by Congressman Michael McCaul and also included former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi arrived in Dharamshala on June 16.

The delegation’s visit came ahead of the US Congress passing a bill urging Beijing to re-engage with the Dalai Lama and other Tibetan leaders to peacefully resolve their dispute over the status and governance of Tibet.

‘The Resolve Tibet Act’ urges Beijing to re-engage with Tibetan leaders for a peaceful resolution of their governance dispute with China.

US Representatives – Gregory Meeks, Mariannette Miller-Meeks, Nicole Malliotakis, Ami Bera and Jim McGovern are the other members of the visiting delegation.