The District Court of Gangtok dismissed the case of Tsurphu Labrang

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In this legal manoeuvre, Gyaltsab Rinpoche tried to remove himself as defendant number three in the case filed by Karmapa Charitable Trust in July 1997.

One of the arguments he used is that as head of Gyaltsab Labrang he was not connected with Karmapa’s Labrang, the Tsurphu Labrang. However, it is noteworthy that in 1999, Gyaltsab Rinpoche insisted that he was owner of both the movable and immovable property of Karmapa. At that time he argued that the second Gyaltsab Rinpoche had been regent for the 10th Karmapa for a short time, and since he was a reincarnation of Gyaltsab Rinpoche he was the legal owner of Rumtek Monastery.

However, after the inventory at Rumtek Monastery, July 2002, where many precious antique religious objects were documented as missing, including the prediction letter produced by Situ Rinpoche, eleven lawyers from Delhi were hired to set up a Tsurphu Labrang. This Labrang was to replace defendant Gyaltsab Rinpoche, and thereby relieve him of any responsibility or wrong doing in the case.

In court proceedings, lawyers for the plaintiff, the Karmapa Charitable Trust (KCT), made it clear that the KTC actuality is the Tsurphu Labrang. Historically, in Tibet, Tsurphu Labrang was the name of Karmapa’s administration. When the 16th Karmapa escaped to India, he organised his administration in Rumtek, Sikkim, according to the laws of India. Thus he set up the Karmapa Charitable Trust, which is the legal name of the Tsurphu Labrang in India.

In court, Situ and Gyaltsab Rinpoches’ party was asked to provide documents for their claim of being the actual Karmapa Tsurphu Labrang. They were unable to do so. Nor could they produce any documentation proving that the 16th Karmapa had appointed Mr.Tenzing Namgyal, brother in law of Trangu Rinpoche, General Secretary.