DHARAMSALA, 8 July: The Tibetan spiritual leader, His Holiness the Dalai Lama as well as the Central Tibetan Administration, (CTA) the Tibetan government-in-exile have both offered their condolences over the demise of Virbhadra Singh, the former Chief Minister of Himachal Pradesh.
The Dalai Lama has written a missive addressed to his widow, Smt Pratibha Singh, to offer his condolences and described the 4th and the longest-serving Chief Minister of Himachal as someone who dedicated “himself to the service of others,” and that he “led a long and meaningful life.”
Speaking about the former Chief Minister and his friendship, the octogenarian Tibetan leader has said, “I am personally grateful for the warm friendship he showed me over the many years we knew each other.”
“Historically there have long been close ties between the people of the erstwhile princely state of Bushahr, to which ‘Raja Sahib’ belonged, and their neighbours in western Tibet.”
The Dalai Lama offered his prayers and concluded by saying that “Here in Himachal Pradesh, Shri Virbhadra Singh, our longest-serving Chief Minister, will be sorely missed.”
The President of the CTA Penpa Tsering has offered condolences on behalf of the CTA and the Tibetan people in a missive addressed to Shmt Pratibha Singh.
“It is with great sadness that we learned of the passing of the late Shri Raja Virbhadra Singh. On behalf of the Central Tibetan Administration and the Tibetan people, I sent our deepest condolences to you, your family, and the people of Himachal Pradesh,” President Tsering has said.
He further wrote that “through his dynamic leadership and decades of service to the nation and the state of Himachal Pradesh,” the Chief Minister “has left an indelible mark in the hearts and lives of many. Likewise, His Holiness the Dalai Lama and the Tibetan people remain grateful for his support and generosity throughout the past decades.”
He further offered his deepest condolences and concluded by saying that “Today, the Tibetan people mourn this colossal loss alongside your family and the people of Himachal Pradesh while honoring the legacy of Shri Virbhadra Singh Ji.”
A six-time chief minister and former Union minister, Singh passed away at the age of 87 at a Shimla hospital in the early hours of Thursday after a prolonged illness.