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Tibetan girl in Indian films

Published : Jul 1, 2018, 12:10 am IST
Updated : Jul 1, 2018, 12:10 am IST

Nyima Nangchung, a tibetan girl who loves old hindi film songs, will soon be seen in an upcoming malyalam movie.

Nyima with His Holiness the Dalai Lama
 Nyima with His Holiness the Dalai Lama

Since the Malayalam music video Madhumozhi released last year, people were curious to know about the lead actress. Now she is hopeful that people would be able to recognise her when they see her in Shaji N. Karun’s upcoming movie Oolu, one year later. Two years ago, when her second short film in the Tibetan language was released, Malayali filmmaker Arun Bose happened to see the video and wanted to meet the actress. He contacted Nyima Nangchung, a Tibetan girl who loves Bollywood films and songs deeply. “I was connected to Arun by my dear friend and colleague Dhardon Sharling La, they are collegemates. Arun saw my videos and pictures and asked me whether I would like to act in a Malayalam musical video,” shares Nyima.

Like any other Tibetan settled in India, Nyima loves old Hindi songs. But acting in a language that she never heard before was special. Initially, she didn’t understand the meaning of the song and even without knowing that, she loved the melodious music. What she found interesting was that the music was very poetic and the story was about love. Nyima had no second thoughts about accepting the role after the director explained the plot.

Nyima is proud of the Tibetan culture and lifestyle, and believes it is important to know one’s roots. She was thrilled about her culture being showcased in the video. “I think this is the first ever cross-cultural love story between a Tibetan girl and an Indian guy, in which Tibetan culture is beautifully shown. Madhumozhi is and will always be special to all of us,” Nyima says.

Her film Oolu tells the story of a rape victim. “Oolu is the tale of a girl who gets gangraped and her trauma after the tragic incident. I played the role of a young Buddhist girl, who is a student researcher, curious to learn the history of a sinking island,” she says, adding that the movie is powerful and the maestro has put a lot of effort into it. The movie that has Esther Anil and Shane Nigam in lead roles has already gone to international film festivals, including London.

Nyima, who is a Tibet Corps coordinator and Tibetan Solidarity Alliance programme officer at Central Administration, says she also considers India as her home. But she dreams of going back to her independent homeland one day. “Our people are going through a difficult phase after the invasion. My family had to struggle a lot. Though I was born and brought up in Dharamsala, I know stories of the hardships they faced. My parents ended up here due to the illegal occupation of my homeland, the colonisation of Tibet by China. My mother was born in India and my father didn’t come here voluntarily. Other Tibetans and my father were forced out of our homeland after the invasion. He was only 4 years old when he came here in exile. It’s sad and frustrating,” she says, adding, “It’s important for us to be recognised as independent people. Being born in Dharamsala and living in the Tibetan community, I got an education and was offered opportunities. The Tibetan struggle is something that will always remain in my mind and life.”

Nyima’s love for her second homeland India is unending. She says except for one or two bad incidents during her stay at Delhi, Indians are very welcoming. “The Indian government has been very generous and supportive of Tibetans. India has given us freedom and autonomy to live but the masses, in general, do not know about the Tibet issue, which is sad,” says Nyima.

She also had the opportunity to meet Dalai Lama. “His Holiness the Dalai Lama does not want the Tibet issue to cause a war between India and China. He has always said Tibet should be a zone of peace between India and China and all over Asia,” she adds.

Though she is not a full-time actor or model, she says it is one of her passions. “There are two projects in progress, one of them is in Malayalam and I am so excited about it. I had never seen south Indian films before Madhumozhi. Now I watch south Indian movies,” smiles Nyima. 

Tags: tibetan girl, nyima nangchung