Tibetans in New Delhi take part in a protest rally in solidarity with Tibetan self-immolators. Demonstrators appealed for immediate international intervention in the ongoing crisis in Tibet. November 28, 2012.
DHARAMSHALA, November 28: A Tibetan college student was arrested today for attempting to set himself on fire at a protest rally in the Indian capital New Delhi.
Tsultrim Dorjee, a Delhi University student, tried to self-immolate just before the mass protest rally began from Rajghat, memorial to Mahatma Gandhi. Nearby Tibetans saw him dousing petrol over his body and quickly intervened and prevented him from setting himself on fire. He was then detained by police and released after the protest rally ended.
Over 400 Tibetans took part in the protest rally organised by the Tibetan Youth Congress, the largest pro-independence group in exile, to show “solidarity with Tibetan self-immolators and to appeal for immediate international intervention.”
Protesters carried their march to Jantar Mantar, carrying Tibetan National Flags and ‘Free Tibet’ banners and shouting slogans for the “Return of His Holiness the Dalai Lama to Tibet and Independence for Tibet”.
Addressing the gathering, TYC Finance Secretary Konchok Yangphel said the Communist Chinese regime in Tibet is “responsible for all the self-immolations inside Tibet.”
“China will never be the world power they so crave for until they return Tibet to Tibetans,” he said. “It is the responsibility of Tibetans in exile to be the voice of voiceless Tibetans inside Tibet and pressure the Chinese government and appeal world leaders for immediate intervention.”
Last month, Dorjee, a former executive member of the Delhi regional chapter of TYC, had carried out a prostration campaign
along with a friend in New Delhi.
Wearing nothing but shorts and their bodies painted with colours of the Tibetan national flag, Dorjee and Tenzin Tsewang dragged coffins, symbolic of the Tibetans who have “died under Chinese colonial rule,” while doing full body prostrations from the Delhi University campus to the Tibetan colony of New Aruna Nagar.
Following the campaign, Dorjee told Phayul that the prostration campaign was to express “solidarity with Tibetans who have sacrificed their lives protesting against China’s occupation of Tibet.”
“Through this campaign, we also want to send a message to the Tibetan youth to not only take part but also lead activities and campaigns,” Dorjee had said.
In March this year, a young Tibetan man, Jamphel Yeshi
set himself on fire in New Delhi at a protest rally organised by TYC, demanding international intervention in the ongoing crisis in Tibet and protesting the visiting Chinese President Hu Jintao.
Suffering 98 per cent burn, Jamphel Yeshi passed away two days later.
The deepening crisis inside Tibet has witnessed large scale anti-China protests and a series of self-immolations that has now seen 87 Tibetans set themselves on fire, since 2009, demanding freedom and the return of the Dalai Lama from exile.
November alone has reported 25 self-immolations and protests by thousands of Tibetans, including by school students in Chabcha and in Rebkong.