An interview with Lobsang Sangay, prime minister of the Tibetan government-in-exile
Sangay, left, stands next to Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama as he greets the crowd at his swearing-in ceremony in Dharmsala, India on Monday. AP.
On August 8, Lobsang Sangay was sworn in as prime minister of the Tibetan exile government based in Dharamsala, India. Sangay, 43, left his post as a fellow at Harvard Law School to take his new position in Dharamsala, the northern Indian hill town that's been home to the Dalai Lama after he fled China's invasion of Tibet in 1959.
The new prime minister bears more responsibility after the Dalai Lama, 76, relinquished his formal political role in the exile administration in June to strengthen a secular exile government that could be independent of him.
While the Dalai Lama remains the spiritual leader of Tibetan people, the administration-in-exile oversees the day-to-day affairs of Tibetans refugees, from running an extensive Tibetan school system in India, to managing finances to assist refugees, to shaping policy toward China. Nearly 100,000 Tibetans live in India -- the world's largest population outside of Tibet.
Sangay was born in Darjeeling in northeast India, went to schools for Tibetan refugees and has a law degree from Delhi University. As a child, his family sold one of their few cows to pay for his education. He won a Fulbright scholarship and in 2004 earned a PhD from Harvard Law School. At Harvard, he wrote his dissertation on the democratization of the Tibetan exile administration.