Dagri Rinpoche refutes molestation charges, declares no resentment towards accusers
DHARAMSALA, 13 May: Dagri Rinpoche has asserted that the allegations of molestation charges against him were baseless and that he has done nothing to be ashamed of.
A statement released by the 65-year old Rinpoche stated that he did not molest the 30-year-old woman while on board the flight from Delhi to Gagal (Dharamsala) as claimed by the women and widely reported.
Dagri Rinpoche, while refuting the charges has stated in the statement released in Tibetan on Sunday that, “the reality is, my seat is on the isle and a male co-passenger was seated on the right side of me on the flight. On the other side of the aisle, was seated two female passengers, while in mid-air, I stood up to place an article inside the overhead bin. I couldn’t sit back straight on my seat as I have a weak knee, so I held the armrest of the seat across the aisle and that caused the lady passenger to woke up from her sleep. The lady seemingly angry uttered something to me, as I couldn’t understand what’s being said, I smiled at her and sat on my seat. But she continued to say something, so I changed my seat and sat on a back side seat. While we landed, she complained to the police and alleged that I molested her by touching her.”
A co-passenger, a woman from Kinnaur has accused Rinpoche of molesting her on a morning flight from Delhi to Gagal (Dharamsala) on an Air India Flight on 3rd May”, reported several Hindi language newspapers citing an FIR lodged at the Gagal Police station.
The 65-year old Rinpoche was reportedly detained by the police for enquiry after which he was said to be released on bail.
The following day, a Hindi newspaper published a false report stating that I work at the Ganden Phodrang,(the Office of His Holiness the Dalai Lama)” Rinpoche continued.
“I don’t work at Ganden Phodrang and I didn’t pretended I did,” Rinpoche said in the statement.
After the report of the molestation allegation against Dagri Rinpoche on the flight, Jakaira Perez Valdivia, a Spanish woman has alleged that she was molested by the senior Tibetan Buddhist teacher as well ten years ago when she was a nun in a video posted on YouTube on Tuesday.
She has stated that it took her a long time to come out in the open to tell about her ordeal because people tried to convince her otherwise, that the Rinpoche did it out of compassion.
She further claimed that there are many other women who were also molested by Dagri Rinpoche.
Responding to her allegation, Rinpoche has said in the statement that many years ago, a nun has approached him with physical and mental distress.
“Three years later, she complained about the same. What was truth was disclosed then as we met and the matter was discussed in the presence of six witnesses.”
Rinpoche concluded by stating that the allegations of molestation charges levelled against him were baseless and that he has done nothing to be ashamed of while declaring no resentment towards those who have wrongly accused him and further expressed his hopes that they will accumulate no sins of desire or aversion for that.