Separate Note attached to His Holiness Letter to Deng Xiaoping of March 23, 1981

Separate Note attached to His Holiness' Letter to Deng Xiaoping of March 23, 1981

In recent times, in accordance with the contacts made by Beijing through Gyalo Thondup three fact-finding delegations have already visited Tibet. The fourth one is scheduled to leave in April this year. Although Beijing had already agreed to the deputation of 50 teachers from India to different schools in Tibet for a period of two years and the opening of a liaison office in Lhasa to facilitate mutual contacts, recently Gyalo Thondup received the following message from Beijing through the Xinhua News Agency in Hong Kong: 

  • As regard the fourth fact-finding delegation, nothing has been confirmed so far. A response will be given later either through Hong Kong or the Chinese embassy in New Delhi.
  • Although we have agreed in principle to the opening of a liaison office in Lhasa and the deputation of teachers, it would be better to defer the opening of the liaison office and instead more contact should be made through Hong Kong and the Chinese embassy in Delhi.
  • The teachers having been brought up in India with all good facilities would find it difficult to live in Tibet where facilities are lacking at the moment. This could harm their morale. It is therefore suggested that the sending of teachers to Tibet be deferred. For the time being some teachers may be deputed to the nationalities schools inside China from where they could gradually be sent to Tibet. (Subsequently, a message received through the Chinese embassy in Delhi conveyed that the fourth delegation should be postponed for this year)

The following is our response to the above matters:

  • We agree to the postponement of the fourth delegation for this year, as well as the opening of the liaison office in Lhasa for the time-being.
  • On the matter of sending teachers to Tibet, since the teachers are already aware of the difficult conditions in the schools in Tibet, this will neither lower their morale nor come in the way of carrying out of their tasks. Above all, the main reason for sending the teachers is to uplift the standard of education of the students living in difficult conditions. We hope you will reconsider this matter. The teachers will be concerned solely with educational matters and will not indulge in any political activities. There is, therefore, no need to worry on this point.