By Tenzin Monlam
DHARAMSHALA, August 10: A former political prisoner who was released in 2013 in an ailing condition has succumbed to his injuries sustained during his imprisonment. Ven. Khenrab Tharchin, a monk of Shelkar Choede monastery in Dhingri died on Monday at the age of 40.
Khenrab was arrested in May 2008 for protesting and refusing to take part in the ‘Patriotic reeducation’ campaign at his monastery.
On May 19, 2008, the then32-year old and a member of the so-called Democratic Management Committee (DMC), along with 11 other monks stood against the Chinese ‘work team’ conducting the campaign in their monastery.
They had openly opposed the patriotic reeducation saying they cannot denounce the exile Tibetan leader the Dalai Lama who is reviled as a “splittist” by the official Chinese propaganda.
The defiance led to a five-year imprisonment term, during which he was subjected to extreme torture and beating, sources revealed. He was released in 2013 due to poor health which has been deteriorating since.
“His relatives took him to the hospital, but he died on the way there,” RFA quoted a source as saying.
The deceased monk hailed from Drushe Village, Shelkar Township in Dhingri County.
The Chinese authorities have re-launched and strengthened the campaign in the so-called Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR) on April 1, 2008. Since its re-launch, they have covered all the major Tibetan populated regions, primarily the monastic institutions, forcing them to denounce the Dalai Lama.