Complete freedom to choose religion says Dalai Lama

Complete freedom to choose religion says Dalai Lama

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Source: ST

Voicing concern over religious conversion, Tibetan spiritual leader Dalai Lama on Sunday said forceful conversion was not correct and an individual must have freedom to choose religion.

Dalai Lama had an emotional reunion with the 5th Assam Rifles jawan who received him after his escape from Tibet in March 1959. Naren Chandra Das, 76, had received Dalai and escorted him till Balipara in Assam. Das told ET, “I went to receive Dalai from Lumla while he was entering India. It was a very difficult journey. ”

Dalai embraced Das during a river festival of Namami Brahmaputra here. Dalai said, “I am very happy to meet him after so many years. Almost 58 years have passed. I now realise that I have grown old.” On conversion, Dalai said, “Whether you accept a religion or not is up to that particular individual.

There has to be complete freedom so that he can choose his religion. I am a Buddhist but I never propagate Buddhism in the West. Change of religion also creates confusion sometimes. So I do not support forceful conversion but if someone wants to change his religion voluntarily, there should be freedom.”

He added that it was wrong when conversion is forceful or due to allurement like money.