Shimla, June 15: Himachal Pradesh Police Friday arrested a high ranking lama of the Karma Kagyu School, a sect of Tibetan Buddhism, from Delhi in connection with the arrest of eight suspected Taiwanese for staying illegally in the state.
“Bo Gangkar Rinpoche was arrested from Delhi and will be brought to Himachal Pradesh,” Additional Director General of Police S.R. Mardi told IANS here.
Sources in the police said he would be taken to Mandi town, around 150 km from here, for interrogation.
The eight foreigners were arrested for staying illegally in Chauntra village near Jogindernagar in Mandi district, around 300 km from here, in a massive police crackdown Tuesday evening.
Police seized Rs.30 lakh and $3,000 from their possession.
They are on police remand till Saturday.
A senior police official, who did not want to be named, said Gangkar Rinpoche was a follower of the 17th Karmapa Ogyen Trinley Dorje, the spiritual head of the Karma Kagyu School, who is staying in the Gyuto Tantric University and Monastery on the outskirts of Dharamsala, the seat of the Tibetan government-in-exile.
Rinpoche, whose name is Karma Lobsang Bhutia, was born and brought up in Himachal Pradesh. Police are investigating his links with Taiwan. It is believed that he had visited Taiwan in 2005.
Chauntra village, where the Taiwanese were arrested, is a Tibetan-dominated place and located around 90 km from the Dalai Lama’s official palace in McLeodganj.