ONE hundred years ago, in July 1914, a tripartite convention, involving Great Britain, China and Tibet, culminated in Simla (now Shimla). The conference, which began on October 13, 1913, was held at Wheatfield, a property of the Maharaja of Darbhanga. Apart from the large conference chamber, separate meeting and retiring rooms were provided for the respective plenipotentiaries and their staff. The refreshment room on the third floor catered to the needs of the delegates. The Tibetan delegation was lodged at a place called Mythe. The Chinese party was put up at Okover. The residence of Sir Henry McMahon, the British plenipotentiary, was called Konckdrin.
Despite elaborate plans and preparations, the six-month-long conference was a failure. However, it produced a secret bilateral accord between Tibet and Great Britain, which was signed in Delhi, away from the conference venue. The dubious agreement was disavowed by all the three parties to the convention.
This is an article published in Frontline Magazine