TYC Vice-President Dhondup Lhadar breaks down after receiving a letter from the Delhi Police ordering a termination of their hunger strike which began September 3, 2012.
DHARAMSHALA, September 19: Indian authorities in New Delhi have issued a termination notice to the three Tibetan hunger strikers following deterioration in their health, yesterday.
The hungers strikers were given official medical check-ups on Monday and Tuesday by the Delhi police following which the letter was issued on the 16th day of their indefinite fast.
Medical officials had expressed particular concern over the health of Dhondup Lhadar, vice-president of Tibetan Youth Congress, who had lost 9kgs and referred him to immediate medical attention. Last year, Lhadar had taken part in a TYC hunger strike, going without food for 25 days and had since not fully recovered.
“On the basis of their medical assessments, the Station House Officer (SHO) PS Connaught Place, New Delhi, issued a letter to TYC executives with directions to terminate the hunger strike,” TYC said in a release late last night. “In the letter, OPD registration card No. E-172317/12 dt. 18.09.12, Dhondup Lhadar was referred to RML Hospital by the doctor for needful treatment and fluids.”
Upon receiving the letter, Lhadar broke down inconsolably. "The most difficult part of the hunger strike has been crossed over and now the long wait ahead would be tolerable enough, but the Indian police had always given proper response and treatment but they seemed to have changed owing to pressure from different powers," the father of a two-year daughter old was quoted as saying.
The three TYC Central Executives, Jigme Sholpa(L),Dhondup Lhadar(C), and Penpa Tsering(R), on the 16th day of their indefinite fast in New Delhi on September 18, 2012.
TYC expressed disappointment at the response from the police but said they were determined to continue with the fast.
As part of their ongoing diplomatic efforts, TYC Joint Secretary Tenzin Norsang and International Relation Secretary Tenzin Dolma visited the Canadian High Commission and met Theressa de Haan, First Secretary of Political and Economic Affairs. They had a “detailed discussion” on the current situation inside Tibet and submitted an appeal letter urging Canada to “put their support and solidarity in practice during such critical times.”
The three TYC Central Executives, Dhondup Lhadar, vice-president, Penpa Tsering, organisational secretary, and Jigme Sholpa, cultural secretary began their indefinite fast on September 3 in “solidarity with the self-immolators inside Tibet and to appeal for immediate international intervention” in the unfolding crisis inside Tibet.
Since 2009, there have been 51 known cases of self-immolations inside Tibet demanding freedom and the return of His Holiness the Dalai Lama from exile.