Friday, June 02, 2023

Tibetan administration civil servant Samphel dies

IANS | June 04, 2022 06:27 PM

DHARAMSALA: Thubten Samphel, a veteran diplomat, bureaucrat and civil servant of the Central Tibetan Administration (CTA), who had written extensively on Tibet for Indian and international newspapers, passed away on Saturday at the age of 66.

He was a former Secretary of the Department of Information and International Relations (DIIR), CTA, who last served as the Executive Director of Tibet Policy Institute.

The DIIR, in a statement, expressed sorrow at the loss of a simple yet one of the most intellectual civil servants who had served the CTA for nearly 40 years.

Known for his intellectual and academic bent of mind, Samphel had authored several books, including "Falling Through the Roof", "The Dalai Lamas of Tibet" (co-authored), and "Copper Mountain".

DIIR minister Norzin Dolma said: "While honouring the tall legacy of Kungo Samphel for his dedicated service, inspiring personality and huge contribution to the Tibetan cause through different portfolios, most specially in the DIIR, we offer our heartfelt prayers and sincere condolences to the family members in this time of grief and loss."

Samphel was born in 1956 in Lhasa to a humble family who worked for Yabshe Taktse family. At the age of six, he escaped Tibet to India with his elder brother.

Following his arrival, he was admitted to Tibetan Children's Village school and sent to Dr Graham's Homes in Kalimpong later. He studied BA and MA in History from St. Stephen College, Delhi University.

During his master's programme, Samphel worked as an apprentice under Secretary Tenzin Geyche Tethong in the Office of His Holiness the Dalai Lama for a year.

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