3 Responses

  1. The Himalayan Olympics | Jamie Furlong
  2. 10 things to do in Darjeeling for under £5 | lizcleere.com
  3. Mysore
    Mysore 23/05/2012 at 13:05 |

    Interesting story Liz. I shall show this one to my mother. She will be so pleased to know that a sizeable Tibetan community have kept their cultural crafts – even though the methods have barely changed in 50 years.
    My mother is 92 now. In 1959 onwards she was involved in helping the settlement of Tibetans in a scrubby region of Mysore called Bylakuppe. The Maharaja donated the land (3,000 acres) and the jungle vegetation was burnt to the ground to prepare it for ‘habitation’. The Dalai Lama wrote, ‘when they saw the land, many of the refugees broke down and cried.’ They had come from their mountain homes in thick woollen clothes. They were used to subsisting on the produce from lamas and yaks and now they had to adjust to farming on the hot and dry plain.
    The Indian National Christian Council and OXFAM donated some cows, bullocks and chickens, helped build a creche and set up a basic medical clinic. When the people came for treatment to the hospital where my father worked, local children would jeer at them in the street. My brothers and I would let our dog out frequently to scare the children away.
    Now Bylakuppe has a population of 22,000, farming communities, and Buddhist monasteries and schools for around 5,000 monks. In Mysore city you will see young monks in their orange robes and not a head turns, so integrated is the settlement.
    My mother has written about this and many other things in her book, ‘Cor Blimey! Where ‘ave you come from?’ ISBN No. 978-0-9565359-3-1

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