DHARAMSHALA, July 7: Tibetan residents of Nara and Dziwa villages in Chamdo region's Pashoe County have been asked to vacate their farming land by the Chinese authorities who claim the land would be used to build hospitals and schools, reported the Radio Free Asia.
The Tibetans, who claim they have farmed the land for centuries, have vowed to appeal higher authorities regarding the matter.
The land shared by Pashoe county’s Nara and Dziwa villages, is claimed by Pema township officials for development, a resident told RFA.
“Authorities say they need the land for the construction of hospitals and schools and other public places, and are offering low levels of compensation for those now living there,” the source told RFA condition of anonymity.
The same source said that villagers believe the local Chinese officials are trying to take over their land to sell it at a higher rate to Chinese businessmen and their relatives.
According to the same source, Chinese authorities are now threatening the villagers to sign hand-over agreements by July 20, claiming that their orders come from “all levels of the Chinese government.”
But villagers believe there has been no such order from higher authorities, and that “the plan to take their land comes only from the county chief and a few other officials.”
In April, nearly 200 Tibetan families living in Pashoe and Dzogang county were ordered to leave their homes to make way for an unspecified government construction project, and bear the expenses of moving to new locations.
Standoffs between Chinese authorities and Tibetans over seizure of land have been reported in the past, many resulting in violent suppression.