By Tenzin Monlam
Phayul Photo: Kunsang Gashon
DHARAMSHALA May 17: Tibetan NGOs and exile government (Central Tibetan Administration) marked the 22nd year since the forced disappearance of the 11th Panchen Lama Gedhun Choekyi Nyima recognized by the Dalai Lama.
Calling for his immediate release, Students for a Free Tibet and the regional chapters of Tibetan Youth Congress (TYC) and Tibetan Women’s Association (TWA) organized a street play showing the young Lama’s abduction by the Chinese government at the age of six.
“It will be hard for any mother to lose a child of mere 5-6 years old. Hence this small enactment is aimed to make every Tibetan realize that spreading awareness about the Panchen Lama is our responsibility,” said Gen Yangla, President of regional TWA.
The TWA central and regional chapter collaboratively organized a peaceful rally from Tsuglagkhang in Mcleod Ganj to Kacheri in lower Dharamshala, which was joined by hundreds of Tibetans raising slogans for his release and seeking support from the international community.
The TWA demanded that Chinese government release a latest picture of the grown up Gendun Choekyi Nyima along with proof of his good health. The organization further demanded his release and to allow an independent body such as United Nations to meet him.
The organization has also sent their members to various consulates including the US and to the office of United Nations in New Delhi seeking their intervention in the matter and to put pressure on China.
With over 22 years without any concrete information on his current situation and whereabouts, the Tibetan Center for Human Rights and Democracy (TCHRD) today launched a special report on arbitrary detention titled ‘Inevitable Imprisonment: Arbitrary Detention and its Effects on the Exercise of Universal Rights in Tibet’.
The report evaluates the new laws and methods employed by China to carry out ‘deprivation of liberty in Tibet’ and also explaining how each type represents a violation of international human rights law. It also highlights the international enforcement mechanisms available to combat the arbitrary detention violations in Tibet.
The CTA also launched a 4-minute video titled ‘Ten Facts About the Missing Panchen Lama’ featuring interview with Dr. Abishek Singhvi, Spokesperson for Indian National Congress and a lawyer, in which he spoke how China has used brute force to suppress all dissent and the unrepentant approach towards fundamental, spiritual and religious rights of the Tibetan people.
“The more they suppress the concept of Panchen Lama, the more they appoint a puppet Panchen Lama of the Chinese liking, the more they create a permanent anger and a permanent repulsion in the hearts and minds of the Tibetan people,” Singhvi says.