Dharamsala Tibetans observe International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking with open marathon
By Lobsang Tenchoe
DHARAMSALA, June 26: Central Tibetan Administration’s (CTA) Department of Health in collaboration with Tibetan Settlement Office of Dharamsala and Kunphen Center for substance dependence and HIV/Aids organized an open marathon today to observe the International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking.
Choekyong Wangchuk, the Health Minister of CTA, flagged off the 6-kilometer-long marathon that started from Tibetan National Martyrs’ memorial at the entrance of Tsug-lak-Khang, the main temple in McLeod Ganj.
“The world is plagued by drug abuse and our Dharamsala community is no different; in fact its sprouting. Therefore, we are observing the International Day Against Drug Abuse to spread awareness among our community as a preventative measure. Health Department alone can’t resolve it. Rather than vesting the issue alone to Health department every one in the community should shoulder the responsibility,” Kunphen’s Director and Tibetan Parliamentarian Dawa Tsering said ahead of the marathon race.
The event was sponsored by United States’ Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration (PRM). Hundred and five students from Upper TCV School, Lower TCV School, TCV School Gopalpur, TCV School Suja, TCV School Chauntra, Yongling School, Tibetan Transit School and Sambhota Chauntra School along with twenty-two local Tibetans took part in the open marathon.
The open marathon had two categories, one each for the male and female participants. The top five from both the categories were awarded a cash prize of Rupees 8000, 6500, 5000, 3000 and 2000 respectively.
Tenzin Tsering from Upper TCV School bagged the first position in the male category followed by Kalsang Dawa of TCV School Suja, Sonam Dorje and Injumello and Tenzin Jamphel of TCV School Chauntra.
Tenzin Lhamo from Tibetan Transit School bagged the first position in the female category followed by Passang Dolkar from TCV School Suja, Sonam Dekyi from Upper TCV School, Tenzin Palmo from TCV School Suja and Khando, a former student of TCV School Suja.