DHARAMSALA, 27 Oct: The Tibetan Centre for Conflict Resolution (TCCR) hosted a Round Table Discussion here in Mcleod Ganj on Thursday to address the challenges that Dharamsala is grappling with, which affect both the residents and visitors of this picturesque hill town known for its natural beauty and as the residence of His Holiness the Dalai Lama.
While the picturesque hill station continues to attract thousands of tourists and pilgrims each year, and TCCR hopes the visits leave a pleasant experience and a positive influence on the visitors, the centre stated that it may not be possible with “all the garbage piling up and the number of crimes increasing by the year.”
Underscoring the challenges faced by locals in Dharamsala, which extend beyond the environmental concerns, TCCR stated that residents confront unprecedented challenges such as sudden flash floods, landslides, traffic jams, and water shortages, all of which have caused significant disruptions and raised substantial safety and well-being concerns.
In addition to these natural challenges, the Centre adds that the local communities in Dharamsala also grapple with social issues. Witnessing “sporadic events of violence between members of the two communities which becomes a cause for concern impacting both communities and our peaceful way of life in this small hill town.”
The Round Table Discussion, part of the “Coexisting and Flourishing” series initiated in January 2009, was facilitated by Mrs Sonam Dechen, one of the Founding Directors of TCCR.
The event brought together a diverse group of thought leaders, including academicians, politicians, activists, environmentalists, business representatives, and other civil society actors to tackle Dharamsala’s most pressing issues as TCCR sought to identify lessons that would not only strengthen the age-old friendship between Indian and Tibetan communities but also lead to practical solutions and more supportive community-building efforts in Dharamsala.
The TCCR, a Dharamsala-based registered non-governmental organisation established in May 2001, has dedicated itself to the global promotion of peace and nonviolence.
Over the past 21 years, TCCR has conducted more than 400 workshops and training programs on conflict resolution, mediation, counselling, communication, teaching skills, and leadership skills, benefiting over 12,000 individuals from diverse backgrounds.