Tibetan activists submitting an Urgent Petition to the Nepalese embassy in New Delhi to urge the Nepal government to allow a Buddhist cremation for Drupchen on February 13, 2013. (Photo/SFT)
DHARAMSHALA, March 29: Despite repeated appeals from Tibetans and their supporters to release the body of Drupchen Tsering aka Druptse, the Nepalese authorities have secretly cremated his body on Monday.
“We are appalled and deeply disappointed with the government of Nepal which as an independent and constitutionally democratic country has behaved like a totalitarian regime and allowed China to completely undermine its sovereignty,” said Tsewang Rigzin, the President of Tibetan Youth Congress.
“We condemn this insensitive act,” he added.
According to our sources, the Nepalese police have secretly cremated Druptse’s body at Pashupatinath cremation site two days ago in violation of a fundamental Tibetan tradition of funeral prayers and last rites essential for the dead.
Druptse, 25, set himself ablaze on the path around the holy Boudhanath stupa in Kathmandu on February 13. He passed away on the same day with 96 percent burns.
His body was kept in the mortuary of TU Teaching Hospital, Maharajgunj.
Earlier the Nepalese authorities maintained that Druptse’s body could legally be handed over only to his parents, family members related in blood or official diplomatic representatives. If these options are not met within 35 days, the authorities said, they will have legal right over the body.
Since then Tibetans and their supporters have initiated a number of campaigns around the world to appeal the Nepal government to release Druptse’s body.
In a statement released by Students for a Free Tibet-India, a global vigil will be held to honour Druptse on April 3, which will be the 49th day since his death.
“We are deeply saddened to learn that Nepalese authorities have secretly cremated Drupchen Tsering's body without allowing the proper Buddhist final rites,” said Dorjee Tseten, National Director of Students for a Free Tibet, India.
“We request all Tibetans and supporters to participate in this Global Vigil for Drupchen next Wednesday with prayers, public rallies at the Chinese Embassy or Consulate and follow-up visits and phone calls to the Nepalese Embassy or Consulate to express your disappointment about this incident.”
The incident highlights China's stranglehold over Nepal and the precarious situation of Tibetan refugees living here or those escaping occupied Tibet. This calls for a greater international monitoring of China's influence over Nepal and the protection of the rights of Tibetan refugees there.