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28january201101u7Dharamshala: Tibet's spiritual and political leader His Holiness the Dalai Lama left Dharamsala today for a visit to the south Indian state of Karnataka from 30 January - 6 February 2011. The highlights of the visit include the inauguration of memorial of late Shri S Nijalingappa, the first chief minister of Karnataka, who helped in the rehabilitation of the first batch of Tibetan refugees in south India; interaction with students at St Josephs College and a public talk on 'Finding Happiness in Troubled Times' in Bangalore.

On Saturday, His Holiness will inaugurate S Nijalingappa's newly-built memorial on the outskirts of Chitradurga, which is located some 500 km from Bangalore. Late Nijalingappa, who was the Karnataka state's first chief minister from 1956 - 1958 extended support to rehabilitate the first batch of around 3,000 Tibetan refugees at Lugsung Samdupling Tibetan Settlement at Bylakuppe. Chief minister B S Yeddyurappa and leader of opposition Siddaramaiah will attend the function. The trust formed after his demise on 8 August 2000 has been striving to build a befitting memorial at the tome of the great soul for guiding the future generation. "The existing buildings beside the tome include a library, computer room, class rooms, conference hall, audio-visual room, prayer room and others. A research centre attached with a workshop, hostel blocks for both men and women have also been planned as part of the existing buildings," S Sivashankarappa, chairman and founder trustee, told the Times of India.

His Holiness will visit St Joseph College of Arts and Science on Sunday morning. Following his address, there will be an questions and answers session and a 30 minute cultural programme with Tibetans, North-East and other dances. Speaking on the visit, the college principal Dr Ambrose Pinto said: "His Holiness the Dalai Lama is the symbol of love and peace and a universal leader. Supporting His Holiness the Dalai Lama means denouncing oppression and suppression, and as well as announcing hope, determination, and brotherhood." There are 116 Tibetan students in the college."

In the afternoon, His Holiness will give a public talk on 'Finding Happiness in Troubled Times' organised by the Foundation for the Preservation of the Mahayana Tradition (FPMT) and Choe Khor Sum Ling at the National College Grounds, Basanavagudi. Watch live webcast of the talk on dalailama.com from 2:30pm - 4:00pm Indian Standard Time.

His Holiness will then leave for Doeguling Tibetan settlement in Mundgod, where he will inaugurate Rato monastery on 31 January and give religious discourse at Drepung Lachi Monastery and Gaden Shartse Monastery from 1 - 5 February. On 6 February His Holiness will confer a Buddha Maitreya Blessing Empowerment (jampa gonpo jenang) followed by a long life offering ceremony at Gaden Shartse Monastery.

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