Tashi and the Monk wins hearts and laurels at the IDA Awards. A touching and profound story of a lively, wild and troubled girl child, Tashi Drolma, abandoned by her alcoholic father after her mother died, and her teacher Lobsang Phuntsok, the 4o mins documentar film captures the life changing and heart warming series of events that unfold when Tashi comes to the school run by Lobsang Phuntsok in the idyllic landscapes of Tawang in Arunachal Pradesh.
Lobsang Phuntsok was trained under his Holiness The Dalai Lama and have lived in the US spreading love and the teachings of Tibetan Buddhism. He left his life in the states and came back to Tawang to start Jhamtse Gatsal Children’s Community, a school for the abandoned and neglected children. Things change when Tashi comes to the school as one of the 85 siblings under Phuntsok’s care and guidance. The film also captures the scenic beauty of Tawang and the plight of the Monpa tribes of Tawang who struggle for providing the basic needs of their children esp. education.
Perched on a remote mountaintop and surrounded by poverty, today the community is stretched beyond capacity and Lobsang faces the heartbreaking task of saying no to all the requests he receives for new kids to join. During the film he is confronted by the very real consequences of his decisions: a local eleven-year-old boy who he turned down two years ago for a place in the community commits suicide. In a nearby village another young boy’s father dies suddenly and his family, unable to cope, plead with Lobsang to take him in.
Directed by British filmmakers Andrew Hinton and Johnny Burke, Tashi and the Monk has been racking up awards after awards and receiving critical acclaim worldwide. It’s a touching and meaningful story that captures the raw innocence and naughtiness of a 5 year old child and the undeterred dedication of her benefactor and father figure who transforms her to an amicable little girl.