By Kalsang Rinchen
Phuntsok, 27, was beaten to death by police, says TCHRD. Photo/TCHRD
Dharamsala, March 30 - A 27 year old Tibetan monk has died after what some media reports call a "clash" between farmers and police but an exile rights group says is a "beating" by police.
The Tibetan Centre for Human Rights and Democracy (TCHRD) said today Chinese security police beat a Tibetan monk to death on March 25.
Phuntsok, a Tibetan monk from Drango County, Kardze, was beaten severely for pasting anti government leaflets on walls of his locality, according to TCHRD.
Citing sources, TCHRD reported that Phuntsok “pasted leaflets on the walls of a branch office of Drango PSB headquarter, on Shara Thang-do Bridge and on eucalyptus trees of roads and highways in Drango County.”
TCHRD said that Phuntsok's protest was deliberately timed to express his solidarity with his fellow monks of Drango monastery who were tortured, ill-treated and imprisoned during protests last year in March.
Phuntsok campaigned to urge the local Tibetans in Drango County to cancel farming activities as a “gesture of mourning for monks who were tortured, detained and imprisoned by the Chinese authorities.”
Phuntsok was spotted by PSB officials as he was pasting his leaflets on the walls of an automobile service centre, sources told TCHRD, adding that he immediately fled on a motorbike but was caught and beaten up with batons.
According to the TCHRD, the Chinese police describe Phuntsok’s death as suicide but a report by Reuters today said an employee at the People's Hospital in Luhuo county confirmed the death but attributed it to a motorbike accident.
On March 27, the People's Armed Police (PAP) arrested 11 Tibetans from Da-do Village for defying the Chinese authorities’ order to till their farm lands, the TCHRD said. They were paraded in the village, according to the TCHRD, which said their whereabouts are unknown except that they were last seen in a hospital surrounded by PAP officials.