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19december20092Dharamshala: Tibetan spiritual leader His Holiness the Dalai Lama yesterday praised the Indian government for the support extended by it to Tibetans, especially in providing modern education, Tibetan official media reported.

Talking to reporters in Hyderabad, His Holiness, who was there en route to Gulbarga, said the Indian government "has been of immense help to Tibetans in the last 50 years".

"India's support to Tibetans, especially in providing modern education, is laudable,'' His Holiness added.

Recalling the efforts being made to protect Buddhist culture in the country, His Holiness said more and more Indians, especially those from Ladakh, were joining the monastaries set up in the country for theological studies. His Holiness would leave for Gulbarga today for a spiritual discourse at the 'Siddhartha Buddha Vihar'.

Currently, there are about 27,000 students in 82 Tibetan schools for the refugee community throughout India, Nepal and Bhutan. During last 50 years, many students have now become doctors, administrators, engineers, post- graduate teachers, journalists, social workers, lawyers and computer programmers.

A total of 140,000 Tibetans now live in exile, over 100,000 of them in different parts of India. Over six million Tibetans are believed to be living in Tibet, which His Holiness the Dalai Lama fled in 1959 after a failed uprising against Chinese Communist rule.

The Tibetan government-in-exile lays special emphasis on education for the community's children. While some of its schools are administrated by Government of India, others are run by independent organizations such as the Tibetan Children Village (TCV).

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