The Indian Express is running with the following, as of 3:23 IST February 16, 2012:
"Tibetan religious head and the 17th Karmapa, Ogyen Trinley Dorje, has been summoned by an Una court in connection with the case pertaining to the seizure of foreign currencies worth around Rs 7 crore from his monastery last year. The case will come up for hearing early next month, sources in the police said. The Una police said Karmapa was among the 10 people whose names figured in the chargesheet filed in December 2011. The Karmapa’s office has been denying his role in the case."
The Times of India followed at 5:57 IST, as their lead:
SHIMLA: The Tibetan spiritual leader, 17th Gyalwang Karmapa, Ogyene Trinley Dorje, will have to appear in the court of chief judicial magistrate (CJM), Una on March 6 in the case related to unaccounted currency haul from his monastery last year. Karmapa is one of the 10 named in the chargesheet filed by police in the court on December 7 last year and has been charged under section 120B (criminal conspiracy).
Confirming the development, additional director general (law and order) S R Mardi said that the case would be heard in the court on March 6. "The chief judicial magistrate, Una, has sent summons to Karmapa through chief judicial magistrate, Dharamshala. The latter would serve the summons to Karmapa through local police," said Mardi.
"We have full confidence in the due process of judicial system and the Himachal Pradesh state government. As His Holiness, the Karmapa, has said in the past, India is a free and democratic country, based on the rule of law. His Holiness has repeatedly expressed his trust in the Indian legal system. We share his trust, and have no doubt that his innocence will be affirmed in the end," said Karma Chungyalpa, spokesperson for Karmapa.
The chargesheet also included the name of the Karmapa's close aide, Rabgay Choesang aka Shakti Lama. The chargesheet accused Karmapa and others of forming an illegal trust, unauthorized money transaction, unauthorized land deal and making of illegal documents.
This is for the first time that a Tibetan spiritual leader of such stature would have to appear in the court. Karmapa was named in the chargesheet for being the chairperson of trust involved in illegal land transaction, cops said. The accused were also found guilty of violating section 23 of Foreign Exchange Regulatory Act (FERA).
On January 26 last year, police had seized Rs 1 crore cash allegedly brought to Dharamsala to pay for a property deal struck by the Gyuto Trust, which had connections with the Karmapa. Later raids conducted at Gyuto monastery had led to recovery of foreign currency belonging to 26 countries (worth Rs 6.5 crore) which was meant for a land transaction, in complete violation of section 118 of Land and Tenancy Act as no prior permission from the state government was taken to buy the land at Sidhbari.
Karmapa is the spiritual head of Karma Kagyu school, one of the four sects of Buddhism. He is considered the third most important Tibetan religious head after the Dalai Lama and the Panchen Lama. Karmapa fled Tibet and sought refuge in India in January 2000. Ever since, he has mostly lived in the monastery in Siddhbari near Dharamshala, seat of the Tibetan government-in-exile.