Author Topic: Karmapa Raided over alleged illegal funds  (Read 69761 times)

Helena

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Re: Karmapa Raided over alleged illegal funds
« Reply #45 on: February 14, 2011, 09:18:26 AM »

During his two hour long lecture, the Dalai Lama also asked the media to play a responsible role.

"People in media have a special role to play. They can stop the wrong doings," he said and added that media should have a long nose like an elephant and should be able to smell things which are beyond the superficial reality.

"Investigate what''s going on thoroughly and inform people in unbiased form," the spiritual leader advised.

.....

"I told him, a Buddha statue does not speak. Instead of it, print more books that is more important," he said, adding after several wars in the last century, the 21st century should be known as the century of dialogue.


I just wanted to highlight these points from the article DSFriend posted. Although it was essentially a political speech seeking to mend bridges with the Indian government, the Dalai Lama raises here for people to investigate thoroughly - which is what he has also told people to do regarding the Shugden issue. To me, it has an underlying message - it is for us to make up our own minds and not just blindly follow what is said - by the media or even by the Dalai Lama himself.

Re the printing of books - while knowledge is good and a book can help us to learn - even books don't speak, but a Guru does, so we should listen to a Guru above all, right?

I especially liked what you wrote here, WB.

Without a Guru, our understanding will be very limited and our transformation or progress will be much slower.

May there always be a Guru for every sentient being for as long as time and space remains.

Helena

WisdomBeing

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Re: Karmapa Raided over alleged illegal funds
« Reply #46 on: February 14, 2011, 06:15:18 PM »
The Indian government is flexing more muscle - watch out TGIE:

Himachal Pradesh govt to acquire land of Karmapa's Gyuto Monastery
Published: Monday, Feb 14, 2011, 19:23 IST

Himachal Pradesh government is now moving to acquire the land of Gyuto Monastery, the transit home of Karmapa Ugyen Trinley Dorje, as the probe into seizure of large amount of foreign currency from the monastery brought fresh focus on benami deals by the community members.

Officials said that the process of mutation of 'benami' lands in possession of "the Dalai Lama's administration" was on since 2006 and the titles of 73 such properties, including the sprawling premises of Gyuto Monastery, are being transferred in the name of the government.

The government had agreed to consider regularisation of these 'benami' properties by vesting the ownership in the government and further leasing these out to Tibetan Administration, they said.

The information about these lands on which the Tibetan "government-in-exile" had raised structures was provided to the government by Tibetan "administration", official sources said.

Kangra Deputy Commissioner RS Gupta said that it was a routine revenue exercise and mutation in 40 cases had already been done while the title transfer in respect of remaining lands was in process.

"The Gyuto Monastery complex was one such property on which the Dalai Lama administration had build the monastery and the land on which the construction had been done would vest in the government," he said.

Officials said that the process of "regularising" these properties has been hastened after foreign currency worth Rs 7.5 crore belonging to 25 countries including China was recovered by police from the premises of a Karmapa-backed trust and some of the trustees.

The raids followed recovery of Rs one crore from two persons on Mehatpur border on January 25 last, allegedly drawn from a bank in Delhi for some land deal.

However, Gupta said that there will be no immediate physical takeover of the property.
Kate Walker - a wannabe wisdom Being

DSFriend

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Re: Karmapa Raided over alleged illegal funds
« Reply #47 on: February 17, 2011, 07:33:46 AM »
Karmapa’s office denies benami land deal
Press Trust Of India
Shimla/Dharamsala, February 16, 2011

The office of Tibetan spiritual leader Karmapa Ogyen Trinley Dorji has denied the deal for purchase of land by the Karmapa-backed Karmae Garchen Trust was "benami." "We wish to reiterate that this was in no way a benami land deal and the land in question was being purchased in the Trust's own name, with full knowledge of the Indian government", Karma Topden and Deki Chungyalpa, official spokespersons of the Karmapa's office, said.

They claimed the Trust had received a no-objection certificate from the Town and Country Planning Department of the Himachal Pradesh government on December 3, 2010, indicating the state government’s preliminary approval to proceed with the plans to purchase the land.

The spokespersons said since his arrival in India in 2000, the Karmapa had been hosted in a temporary residence in Dharamsala at Gyuto Monastery which belongs to a different Tibetan Buddhist sect.

The Karmae Garchen Trust was seeking to purchase the land in its own name for building a permanent residence and monastery for the Karmapa. They claimed the Dalai Lama had again publicly reaffirmed his confidence in the Karmapa and reiterated that the money seized was unsolicited donations.

The Prime Minister of the Tibetan government-in-exile, Professor Samdhong Rinpoche, also paid a cordial visit yesterday to the Karmapa at his temporary residence located on the grounds of Gyuto Monastery, the spokespersons added.

beggar

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Re: Karmapa Raided over alleged illegal funds
« Reply #48 on: February 20, 2011, 03:53:07 PM »
Looks like the Karmapa is cleared of allegations. Does anyone know what "the Centre" is though?  (sorry, not very well versed in Indian politics)



Clean chit to Karmapa Lama welcomed


Gangtok:  The  Karmapa Reception Committee and Joint Action Committee, a representation of 18 Buddhist organizations of Sikkim, today jointly welcomed the clean chit given to the XVIIth Karmapa Ogyen Trinley by the Centre.

During a press conference in Gangtok, general secretary of the Karmapa Reception Committee K T Bhutia expressed their gratitude to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi, Home Minister P Chidambaram and Home Secretary G K Pillai "for laying to rest all allegations levelled against the Karmapa".

Appealing to the Central government to allow the Karmapa to visit Sikkim and take his "rightful place" at Rumtek, JAC president Kunzang Sherpa commended the Home Secretary's 'understanding of the very innocent' nature of the financial oversight of the Karmapas managers 'born out of ignorance'.

They speakers said a delegation of the organizations would also soon call on Chief Minister Pawan Chamling to pursue with the central government about the Karmapa's visit to Sikkim.

The Centre, on February 16, is understood to have given a clean chit to the Karmapa in the case relating to the huge foreign currency haul from his house saying the money had come in the form of donations and offerings by devotees.

This was the conclusion arrived by the Central government after its agencies probed the case following the recovery of foreign currency to the tune of Rs. 7.5 crore from the Gyuto Monastery, the transit home of the Karmapa, in Himachal Pradesh.

http://www.ndtv.com/article/india/clean-chit-to-karmapa-lama-welcomed-86513

DSFriend

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Re: Karmapa Raided over alleged illegal funds
« Reply #49 on: February 20, 2011, 04:23:01 PM »
Looks like the Karmapa is cleared of allegations. Does anyone know what "the Centre" is though?  (sorry, not very well versed in Indian politics)


The Government of India, officially known as the Union Government is also called the Central Government. I would think "Centre" refers to Central Government.

« Last Edit: February 21, 2011, 11:05:07 AM by DSFriend »

Big Uncle

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Re: Karmapa Raided over alleged illegal funds
« Reply #50 on: February 21, 2011, 03:18:13 AM »
Yes, the Karmapa may have been cleared of allegations but the whole issue will stay on the collective minds of the Indian people for quite awhile. This is already stain on the Karmapa's squeaky clean image and I think that would have implications for the TGIE. Throughout the whole incident, TGIE was surprisingly quiet about the Karmapa. Anyone heard any statements by the TGIE? I think the entire incident will still haunt the TGIE for quite awhile. They seem powerless to support their golden boy. It looks like the same will happen once the Dalai Lama passes on, the TGIE will be powerless to further impose any more of its ridiculous bans and implementations.

DSFriend

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Re: Karmapa Raided over alleged illegal funds
« Reply #51 on: February 21, 2011, 11:11:20 AM »
Ya, the TGIE was quiet about this case. Anyway, TGIE's words doesn't carry much weight. Which is what's sad and worrying when the Dalai Lama is not longer around.

WisdomBeing

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Re: Karmapa Raided over alleged illegal funds
« Reply #52 on: February 21, 2011, 11:30:00 AM »
The Karmapa hits Newsweek! In http://www.newsweek.com/2011/02/20/the-politics-of-reincarnation.html, there's a good summary of the situation with the Karmapa which also mentions the succession issue of the Dalai Lama.

This sentence in particular resonated with me: "The politics of reincarnation has always been a treacherous area in Tibet. In past centuries, rival claimants were often in danger of assassination,..." because Tulku Drakpa Gyeltsen was assassinated because of rivalry with the 5th Dalai Lama!

The Politics of Reincarnation
by Melinda Liu, February 20, 2011

It’s probably best not to even try making sense of Beijing’s pronouncements on the 14th Dalai Lama and other Tibetan spiritual leaders: you’ll only make your head hurt. Last week the officially atheist Chinese government’s State Administration for Religious Affairs disclosed plans to enact a new law forbidding the 75-year-old Buddhist deity to be reborn anywhere but on Chinese-controlled soil, and giving final say to Chinese authorities when the time comes to identify his 15th incarnation.

That might seem to pose a dilemma, given the exiled leader’s earlier promise that he will never again be reincarnated in Tibet as long as his homeland remains under China’s heel. Still, no one seems too concerned just now about the Dalai Lama’s next life. Instead, attention has focused on an all-too-worldly fracas over the finances of the 25-year-old Tibetan-born holy man who seems most likely to assume leadership of the exile community after the current Dalai Lama’s death: the 17th Karmapa Lama.

It began in late January when a random police check found a car in northern India hauling roughly $200,000 in Indian currency. Investigators followed the trail to the Karmapa’s monastery in the Indian town of Dharamsala, where they confiscated trunkloads of cash, reportedly amounting to $1.6 million, including more than $100,000 in Chinese currency—a discovery that immediately revived old suspicions in India’s intelligence community that the Karmapa is a Chinese spy. Beijing didn’t help calm the situation when it quickly issued a denial that the Karmapa was any such thing.

Indian authorities have kept a close eye on the Karmapa ever since he fled Chinese-occupied Tibet in the winter of 1999–2000. Born to a nomadic Tibetan family in 1985, Ogyen Trinley Dorje was identified at the age of 7 as the reincarnation of the 16th Karmapa and taken to a monastery to be raised under constant surveillance by Chinese security forces, forbidden to leave the country even briefly. When his India-based religious tutor was barred from Tibet, the boy staged a harrowing escape via SUV, horseback, and helicopter, arriving in Dharamsala by taxi in early January 2000.

In the years since, the Karmapa has refrained from criticizing the Chinese government—in sharp contrast to the Dalai Lama’s blunt denunciations since his escape from occupied Tibet in 1959—and Beijing has never admitted that the Karmapa has left for good. The Chinese say he’s merely on a quest to retrieve a black hat said to have magical powers and other artifacts currently housed at a monastery in the eastern Himalayan state of Sikkim. The lack of recrimination has only heightened suspicions among some Indian intelligence operatives who still seem unable to accept that a mere 14-year-old could elude Chinese security forces and survive such a trek across snow-choked Himalayan passes. “There are people in the shadows who are suspicious of China and deeply uncomfortable with the Tibetan exiles’ perceived long-term drift towards accommodation with Beijing,” says Robert Barnett, a Tibetologist at Columbia University.

The politics of reincarnation has always been a treacherous area in Tibet. In past centuries, rival claimants were often in danger of assassination, and after the Dalai Lama gave his blessing to a Tibetan boy as the 11th Panchen Lama in 1995, the child disappeared and Chinese authorities installed another youngster in his place. The man generally recognized as the 17th Karmapa himself has at least two rivals for the title, although his claim is supported by both the Dalai Lama and Beijing—and most ordinary Tibetans. Still, to prevent possible unrest, Indian authorities have barred all claimants from the monastery where the black hat is kept. Followers of the two rivals have clashed violently in the past.
As for the mysterious trunkfuls of cash, the Karmapa’s financial representatives stuck to their story that the money had all been donated by his devout followers—including many inside China. And by last week Indian investigators at last conceded that they were telling the truth. “I’ve seen Chinese society ladies swooning all over him,” says Jamyang Norbu, a U.S.-based author and blogger. “This translates into big money.” (Any inclination to celebrate the Karmapa’s exoneration was dampened by news that the Dalai Lama’s 45-year-old nephew had been struck and killed by an SUV while engaged in a 300-mile “Free Tibet” hike in Florida.)

Nevertheless, the uproar was no more than a tame affair compared with what’s sure to ensue when the 14th Dalai Lama finally moves on. He’s said he might come back as a woman, or he might not come back at all. The one certainty is that he won’t go quietly.

With Sudip Mazumdar in New Delhi
Kate Walker - a wannabe wisdom Being

Helena

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Re: Karmapa Raided over alleged illegal funds
« Reply #53 on: February 21, 2011, 03:47:17 PM »
WB, thanks for posting the Newsweek article here for all to read.

The title is truly befitting - the Politics of Reincarnation.

Even without China's rules and policies - Tibet has had long experienced their own politics in their religious institutions. It would not be anything new.

I am reminded of how reincarnations of Tulku Drakpa Gyeltsen can be banned or prohibited from being found. Everything related to this high Lama was systematically wiped out and erased. As if he never existed.

Or how they have taken out names of previous Gurus from their prayers.

The list goes on...politics exist everywhere because different fractions hold their own vested interests to be most important, above all else.


Helena

beggar

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Re: Karmapa Raided over alleged illegal funds
« Reply #54 on: February 21, 2011, 04:38:54 PM »
Yes, the Karmapa may have been cleared of allegations but the whole issue will stay on the collective minds of the Indian people for quite awhile. This is already stain on the Karmapa's squeaky clean image and I think that would have implications for the TGIE. Throughout the whole incident, TGIE was surprisingly quiet about the Karmapa. Anyone heard any statements by the TGIE? I think the entire incident will still haunt the TGIE for quite awhile. They seem powerless to support their golden boy. It looks like the same will happen once the Dalai Lama passes on, the TGIE will be powerless to further impose any more of its ridiculous bans and implementations.

I agree with you there. Unfortunately, people will now always be suspicious of the karmapa and, sadly, perhaps even of other lamas who may have many resources / wealth / properties. Such is the sorry situation that the TGIE have created for themselves and their own great Lamas, who do not deserve this kind of bad rep in any way!

Yes, the TGIE have been very quiet throughout this fiasco. Then again, what did we really expect them to say?

WisdomBeing

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Re: Karmapa Raided over alleged illegal funds
« Reply #55 on: February 22, 2011, 05:52:20 PM »

I am reminded of how reincarnations of Tulku Drakpa Gyeltsen can be banned or prohibited from being found. Everything related to this high Lama was systematically wiped out and erased. As if he never existed.

Or how they have taken out names of previous Gurus from their prayers.

The list goes on...politics exist everywhere because different fractions hold their own vested interests to be most important, above all else.


Good point Helena! Again - is the Tibetan government's karma coming back to them about this too.. since the Tibetan government banned Tulku Drakpa Gyeltsen's lineage 300 years ago and recently the TGIE removed Trijang Rinpoche's names from prayers, the Chinese government is now declaring that they are in control over recognition of reincarnations now.

We can really take refuge in karma.

Kate Walker - a wannabe wisdom Being

WisdomBeing

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Re: Karmapa Raided over alleged illegal funds
« Reply #56 on: March 02, 2011, 12:42:31 PM »
It's interesting that the Karmapa has been given a 'clean chit' but the local government seems to be uninformed in this article on The Central Chronicle. I get the feeling that there's some state vs national politics here but i thought it was interesting that while the Karmapa appears to be declared innocent, seven people are still under arrest. It's not a clear cut case.


HP yet to receive info about clean chit to Karmapa

Shimla, Mar 1:
The Himachal Pradesh government has not received any information about 'clean chit' given by the Centre to 17th Karmapa Ogyen Trinley Dorji on foreign currency haul recovered from Gyuto Tantric Monastery complex and it has come to know about it from media reports only.

Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal told in state assembly during question hour today that the state had come to know from media reports only that the union government had given clean chit to Karmapa ''But we have not received any official intimation from the Union government yet,'' he said while replying to a query raised by Kaul Singh (Congress).

He said neither the Centre was under any obligation to inform the state about it nor it was desirable on the part of the state to seek any information.

The state government would not ask the Centre about it but the Union government can part with relevant information if it wished to do so, he observed.

Dhumal said seven people namely Sanjog Dutt, Ashutosh, Shakti Lama, Karma Kunke Khampa, Rinzin Wango, KP Bharadwaj and DK Dhar had been arrested and were in judicial custody in the matter.

He said huge currency, including foreign currency of China, United States and twenty two other countries had been recovered during the raids by the security agencies.

He said 12,01,97 Chinese Yuan, 6,47,396 US dollars and 6900 US dollars travellers cheques, 6,42,740 Hongkong dollars, 742,900 Taiwan dollars, 4,21,892 Nepalese rupees and Indian currency worth Rs 53,65,265, currencies of Singapore, Australia, UK, Bhutan, Indonesia, Germany and some other countries were also recovered during the raids.

Kate Walker - a wannabe wisdom Being

WisdomBeing

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Re: Karmapa Raided over alleged illegal funds
« Reply #57 on: March 19, 2011, 07:04:34 AM »
Just to keep the forum updated with the latest news regarding this issue. It's interesting that the media is constantly saying that the Karmapa is the "third most important Tibetan religious head after the Dalai Lama and the Panchen Lama." What about Gaden Tripa? Sakya Trizin?

http://www.deccanherald.com/content/147045/karmapas-office-hands-over-150000.html
Deccan Herald
Karmapa's office hands over $150,000 to ED
Dharamsala, March 19 (IANS)

Over a month after the Enforcement Directorate (ED) carried out raids at the monastery where the 17th Karmapa Ogyen Trinley Dorje is residing and recovered huge amounts of unaccounted cash, monastery officials have deposited $150,000 with the agency, an official said Saturday.

Officials of the Gyuto Tantric University and Monastery handed over the money to the ED Thursday.

Confirming this to IANS, a spokesperson for the Karmapa said: "This represents cash that was reported to the authorities in 2003. Submitting it to the ED Thursday was simply part of our process of ensuring that the Karmapa Office of Administration is in full compliance."
The spokesperson in a written statement added: "We continue to cooperate fully with the ED and other investigating agencies."

However, the Karmapa's office refused to divulge the details about the amount.

An official in the ED's Chandigarh office said $150,000 in US currency was deposited. "Two monastery accountants were summoned for questioning. They surrendered US currency," he said.

The official said the Karmapa's aide Rubgi Chosang, also known as Shakti Lama, and two other Tibetans, who got bail from a court, would appear in the ED office Monday.

The Himachal Pradesh High Court March 16 granted bail to Shakti Lama and a couple - Karma Thapa and his wife Rinzin, to join the investigation and appear at the ED office in Chandigarh.

It was after the seizure of Rs.1 crore meant for land purchase that the police Jan 28 conducted searches at the monastery and recovered currency of 26 countries, including 120,197 Chinese yuan and around Rs.5.3 million in Indian currency.

Subsequently, police arrested Shakti Lama, the accountant in the monastery, on suspicion that he was involved in some "illegal" land deal for the monastery.

Later, police arrested the couple in New Delhi in connection with the seizure of Rs.1 crore from two people that was meant as part-payment by the Karmapa's trust to buy land.

The Karmapa's office has been saying that all the money recovered from the monastery was donations from followers, including scores who come from Tibet and carry Chinese currency.

A team of the ED officials from Chandigarh, headed by Deputy Director V. Neeraja, reached the monastery Feb 1 and scanned the account books, ledgers and documents pertaining to financial transactions.

The Karmapa is the spiritual head of the Karma Kagyu school, one of the four sects of Buddhism. He is considered the third most important Tibetan religious head after the Dalai Lama and the Panchen Lama.

The Karmapa fled Tibet and sought refuge in India in January 2000. Ever since, he has mostly lived in the monastery in Sidhbari near Dharamsala - the seat of the Tibetan government-in-exile.
Kate Walker - a wannabe wisdom Being

thaimonk

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Re: Karmapa Raided over alleged illegal funds
« Reply #58 on: March 25, 2011, 11:33:12 AM »
I find something interesting.

After the Karmapa money scandal, I don't hear about him 'succeeding' the Dalai Lama anymore. Now it's let's elect our leaders.

Even the Dalai Lama is handing his power over to newly elected lay officials and not Karmapa although I don't think Karmapa was ever part of the real equation of succession anyways. It was just speculation. Why would all sects follow Karmapa? Not viable.

Does anyone else notice after the big money scandal all has been quiet about Karmapa succession speculations?

beggar

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Re: Karmapa Raided over alleged illegal funds
« Reply #59 on: March 25, 2011, 06:57:32 PM »
I find something interesting.

After the Karmapa money scandal, I don't hear about him 'succeeding' the Dalai Lama anymore. Now it's let's elect our leaders.

Even the Dalai Lama is handing his power over to newly elected lay officials and not Karmapa although I don't think Karmapa was ever part of the real equation of succession anyways. It was just speculation. Why would all sects follow Karmapa? Not viable.

Does anyone else notice after the big money scandal all has been quiet about Karmapa succession speculations?

A very interesting observation thaimonk! It has been quiet all around in all matters regarding the Karmapa!!

Interesting also that immediately after this, Dalai Lama steps down and there starts to be a distinct separation between the spiritual and the secular.