Lobsang Lozin in an undated photo. (Photo/Kirti Monastery)
DHARAMSHALA, July 19: The charred body of Lobsang Lozin, who set himself on fire protesting China’s occupation of Tibet, has been immersed into a river near his monastery in Barkham region of Ngaba, eastern Tibet.
Lobsang Lozin, 18, was given the traditional Tibetan water burial in the night of July 17, the day of his fatal protest.
“The remains of Lobsang Lozin, who gave his life in protest against the Chinese government, were given a water burial in the river nearby Tsodun monastery on the night of July 17,” the exile base of the Kirti Monastery in Dahramshala said in a release yesterday.
“On July 18 the people of Tsodun gathered at the monastery for worship and prayer, and all shops and restaurants in the
township remained closed in a show of mourning.”
Lobsang Lozin, who has been described as an exemplary student with excellent track record in his monastic studies, set himself on fire at around 12 noon near his monastery’s main prayer hall and began walking towards the local Chinese office in flames before falling down.
Later, monks at the Gyalrong Tsodun Kriti Monastery carried Lobsang Lozin’s body inside the monastery premises and offered prayers and conducted rituals.
A “tense stand-off” was reported after local Tibetans blocked a bridge to stop specially dispatched Chinese armed forces from reaching the monastery.
“That evening, a large group of security forces dispatched from Barkham reached Tsodun, but the local Tibetans did their utmost to block the way,” the release said. “The security forces were stopped from entering the monastery and remained on the far banks of the river conducting military drills.”
Gyalrong Tsodun Kirti monastery is located some 80 kms to the north of Barkham County town and is one of the biggest Gelug monasteries in Gyalrong region with over 300 monks.
On March 30 earlier this year, two monks from the same monastery, Chime Palden (21) and Tenpa Dhargyal (22), set themselves on fire in protest over China’s continued occupation of Tibet.
With Lobsang Lozin’s self-immolation, 45 Tibetans have set themselves on fire since 2009 demanding freedom in Tibet and the return of the Dalai Lama from exile.