The Union government has extended the scheme to provide ₹40 crore grants-in-aid to the Dalai Lama’s Central Tibetan Relief Committee (CTRC) for another five years, up to fiscal year 2025-26, the Rajya Sabha was informed on Wednesday. The scheme was extended after the Galwan incident in June 2020 where 20 soldiers were killed in violent clashes with the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) in Eastern Ladakh.
To a question by Biju Janta Dal’s Sujeet Kumar regarding the details of the ₹40 crore the CTRC during the last five years, Minister of State for Home Ajay Kumar Mishra said in a written reply, “The scheme provides for an annual grant of ₹8 crore to CTRC to meet the administrative expenses of Settlement Offices and social welfare expenses for Tibetan refugees staying in Tibetan settlements spread across 12 States/UTs in the country. The entire amount of ₹40 crore (₹8 crore per annum) from 2016-17 to 2020-21 for this scheme has been released/reimbursed to the CTRC.”
On being asked, whether there is any plan to release a second tranche of such funds, the reply stated, “Yes. The scheme has been further extended for five years from 2021-22 to 2025-26. An amount of ₹8 crore to CTRC has been released for the year 2021-22.”
In 2015, the NDA government came out with a new policy for the Tibetan refugees and sanctioned a scheme of providing grant-in-aid of ₹40 crore to CTRC for five years to meet the administrative and social welfare activities expenses of 36 Tibetan settlement offices in different States.
The reply added that the Tibetan Rehabilitation Policy of 2014 is reviewed in consultation with all the concerned stake holders i.e. State/Central Departments.
More than one lakh Tibetan refugees are settled in India. Major concentration of the Tibetan refugees is in Karnataka, Himachal Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, West Bengal and Jammu and Kashmir.
Tibetan refugees began pouring into India in the wake of the flight of the Dalai Lama from Tibet in 1959. The government decided to give them asylum as well as assistance towards temporary settlement.