Dharamshala: Earlier today, Sikyong Dr Lobsang Sangay visited CTA’s quarantine centre at Sherab Gatsel Lobling and Tibetan reception centre at Khanyara and interacted with the students in quarantine.
Sikyong was accompanied by Education Kalon Dr Pema Yangchen, Health Secretary Palden Dhondup, Settlement Officer Kunga Tsering, Dharamsala, and DoHe Quarantine Centre’s Nodal officer Tenzin Kunsang.
In the light of the rapid spread of COVID-19 pandemic and the subsequent imposition of lockdown in India, CTA sprang into action and made necessary arrangements to set up quarantine facility for the stranded students and general public. As per the directive issued by CTA, the stranded college students are quarantined at Sherab Gatsel Lobling while the school students are required to quarantine at Lower TCV. For the general public, a separate quarantine facility has been arranged at Nelenkhang. As the number of Tibetan homecomers to Dharmashala is increasing each day, CTA plans to set up more of such quarantine centres.
A total of 25 stranded students from Baroda, Varanasi, and Selakui are currently quarantined at Sherab Gatsal Lobling in Dharamshala.
Earlier this month, Tibetan students studying in Maharaja Sayajirao University (MSU), Baroda were notified by the university authorities to vacate the hostel and return to their home states as part of the state’s measures to curb the rapid spread of COVID-19.
The students received immediate help from CTA in travel and logistic arrangements in coordination with Tibetan Settlement Officer, Sameyling Delhi for their safe return.
Speaking to the students, Sikyong Dr Lobsang Sangay advised them to use the most of lockdown period to develop a habit of self-study and to hone skills.
To the Tibetan students left stranded anywhere in the country, Sikyong urged them to stay put wherever they are in the view of the travel restrictions and most importantly as a precautionary step. In case of the urgent need to travel, students are advised to get a consent letter signed by their parents or guardians only then CTA will assist them.
“At present, the lockdown situation and complete social distancing may trigger mental health issues in some, however, maintaining a calm mind in the face of crisis is highly advisable,” said Sikyong.
Lastly, he ensured CTA’s effort to mitigate the coronavirus situation in the Tibetan community, and to those in the quarantine centres Sikyong said efforts are underway to meet the additional needs.
Education Kalon Dr Pema Yangchen encouraged the students to take the lockdown as an opportunity to be productive and enhance the knowledge with the help of learning materials online. She suggested that the students could engage in constructive debate and discussions on academic subjects and help each other in their studies.
Following the interaction, Sikyong and Education Kalon took an inspection of the facility before leaving for the inspection of another facility at Lower TCV School.