Naresh K Thakur, Hindustan Times | April 18, 2015
South African anti-apartheid activist Archbishop Desmond Tutu on Saturday reached Dharamsala to meet his long-time friend and fellow Nobel Peace laureate the Dalai Lama.
83-year-old Tutu, who flew to Dharamsala from Amritsar after paying obeisance at Golden Temple on Friday, would stay in the hill-town till April 26 and will attend a series of functions organised by the Central Tibetan Administration (CTA) along with the Dalai Lama.
As a gesture of friendship, the Dalai Lama visited the Gaggal Airport, some 20 kilometers from his exile seat Mcleodganj to receive his friend.
This is Tutu’s second visit to Dharamsala. He last visited Mcleodganj on February 10, 2012, after the South African government barred the Dalai Lama’s entry to the country where he was to attend the celebrations on former’s 80th birthday.
Expressing delight over meeting his friend, the archbishop slammed the South African government for repeatedly denying visa to the Dalai Lama.
“I am so thrilled to be with my dear friend, things and people tried to keep us apart but the love that we have for each other and the goodness of the cause makes us meet again,” Tutu said.
Tutu said he had once asked the Dalai Lama why was China was scared of him. Answering the question Tutu said: “They are right; spiritual leader is something to be taken seriously.”
The Dalai Lama last visited South Africa when Nelson Mandela was the president.