The Dalai Lama, 83, has been admitted to a hospital in the Indian capital New Delhi with a chest infection. He is receiving treatment and is in stable condition, according to his private aide Tenzin Taklha. His Holiness was flown from his residence in Dharamsala on Tuesday after feeling discomfort in his chest.
As reported in the Japan Times, Kangra police superintendent Santosh Patial told The Indian Express that the Dalai Lama, who is based in Dharamsala and has been in permanent Indian exile for some 60 years, took a regular morning flight on Tuesday and was not airlifted.
“There is nothing to panic [about],” he added. “He will be treated for two-three days here,” Tenzin Taklha told Reuters news agency from New Delhi. (Japan Times, BBC)
The Nobel Peace Prize laureate has maintained his extensive travels and speaking schedule over recent years despite his advanced age and some minor health concerns. In June 2017 the Dalai Lama told a gathering in San Diego, California, that on his recent trip to the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, doctors had found nothing left of a “small sign of cancer” in his prostate gland they had identified and treated two years before.
“This time during the examination at the Mayo Clinic, they saw no trace of it. It is completely cured,” His Holiness said. “I arrived [at the clinic] on 13 June, and a medical exam was done on the 14th . . . I was told that my health was very good.” (Central Tibetan Administration)
The Dalai Lama’s personal doctor, Dr. Tseten Dorjee, strongly denied claims last summer that he was in declining health: “As for insinuations that the Dalai Lama needed support while walking because of cancer, he said that the Dalai Lama did have mild osteo-arthritis, common to people his age, but that did not prevent him from maintaining ‘a gruelling pace,’ which many youngsters would find hard to match. In fact, the condition was so mild that it did not even require surgery.” (Central Tibetan Administration)
Nonetheless, attention has been on international relations as the Dalai Lama signals where he might reincarnate. China last month asserted that any Buddhist reincarnation “can only be approved by Beijing and must be subject to Chinese laws and regulations.”*
The Dalai Lama has responded by saying that he may be reborn in India or in a place “where there is maximum suffering” explaining that “the concept of reincarnation is attached to compassion to reach out to those who are suffering, indicating that it stands bereft of any political color.” (The Week)
* China Reasserts Authority on Dalai Lama Reincarnation (Buddhistdoor Global)
Dalai Lama, 83, taken to New Delhi hospital for chest pain, said to be OK (Japan Times)
Dalai Lama, 83, taken to hospital in India (BBC)
Dalai Lama in good health: Personal physician slams news report’s claims of prostate cancer (Central Tibetan Administration)
I will reincarnate where there is maximum suffering of mankind: Dalai Lama (The Week)