Panchen Lama’s birthday cake sets new Guinness Record

A record-breaking 130,232 candles were lit on the Panchen Lama’s 29th birthday.

DHARAMSALA, April 26: Students for a Free Tibet (SFT)-India in collaboration with Tashi Lhunpo Monastery in India broke the Guinness World record for ‘Most Candles Lit on a Birthday Cake’ on the 11th Panchen Lama’s 29th birthday.

As the 11th Panchen Lama, Gendun Choekyi Nyima turned 29 years old yesterday, SFT-India teamed up with Tashi Lhunpo Monastery in Bylakuppee, south India, the exile seat of the Panchen Lama and lit 130,232 candles on his birthday cake and set a new Guinness World record for ‘Most Candles Lit on a Birthday Cake’.

Panchen Lama’s birthday cake easily surpassed the previous record held by an Indian spiritual guru’s birthday cake in the United States by a whopping 57,647 candles.

“We did it! We’ve successfully lit 130,232 candles for the Panchen Lama,” Tenzin Tselha,
National Director of SFT- India said.

SFT-India and Tashi Lhunpo Monastery set the new Guinness World record to bring international attention to Panchen Lama’s continued status as a captive political prisoner. The duo now waits to receive the official recognition from the Guinness Organization headquartered in London.

“We broke the previous world record of 72,585 candles lit, and are now waiting to receive official recognition from the Guinness World Records Organization,” Tselha added.

Gendun Choekyi Nyima, born on April 25, 1989, in Lhari County in Nagchu region of eastern Tibet was recognized as the 11th Panchen Lama by His Holiness 14th Dalai Lama at the tender age of 6 on May 14, 1995.

Three days after his enthronement, the 11th Panchen Lama was kidnapped by the Chinese government and have been held captive since May 17, 1995, along with his family members.

Today the world’s youngest political prisoner has turned into one of the world’s longest-serving political prisoner and even after 22 years, the 11th Panchen Lama and his family’s whereabouts and condition still remains unknown. In his place, another child named Gyaltsen Norbu was appointed as the 11th Panchen Lama by the Chinese government.

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