News and Views on Tibet

China detains dozen Tibetans over demolition of Buddha statue

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The severed head of the 99-ft Buddha statue being loaded in a vehicle (Photo/TCHRD)

By Choekyi Lhamo

DHARAMSHALA, Jan. 14: Over dozen Tibetans have been detained by the Chinese authorities following the demolitions of Buddha statues last month in Tibet’s Drago County in Kham region. The crackdown reportedly continued as the news of a second Buddha statue surfaced last week. A report revealed that around a dozen residents have been arbitrarily arrested by local authorities for opposing government action for the 99-foot Buddha statue.

Among the arrested, the detainees include the abbot of Drago monastery, Paga, his assistant Nyima, and another monk named Tenzin Nyima and Tashi Dorje from the monastery. Moreover, a local resident and sculptor Lhamo Yangkyab and another layman Norpa Tsering Samdup were also taken into custody for unknown charges. The reports said that monk Tenzin Nyima had been severely tortured for not showing “proper expression” to the officials. Others in Chinese custody have not been identified yet.

Following the first demolition, a 30-ft tall Maitreya Buddha statue in the courtyard of Drango Namgyal Ling Monastery was destroyed by the local authorities between December 21-22. “The demolitions of school, Buddha statues, and prayer wheels in Drakgo, Kham and the cases of subsequent arrests and detention of Tibetans by the Chinese authorities are the show cast of China’s belligerent attitude towards Tibetan culture, tradition and identity. Such are serious violations of human rights, including religious freedom,” CTA official spokesperson Tenzin Lekshay condemned the sequence of arrests in the county.

The sources confirmed to CTA that Chinese county officials initially tried twice to demolish the Jetsun Jampa Gonpo (Maitreya) statue located inside the monastery compound but were successful the third time. “Afterwards, with the help of bigger dozers and JCBs, they demolished the whole three-storey temple that housed the statue,” confirmed the anonymous source. Apart from expressing disagreement over the demolition, local Tibetans were also taken into custody for sharing information and photos of the incident with the outside world. Several right groups reported that these detainees are being subjected to severe mistreatment, including torture and improper food in prison.

“The detainees were subjected to beatings and other forms of torture, including being made to stand out in the freezing cold. The custodial beatings have caused injury to an eye of an unnamed monk,” the Dharamshala-based TCHRD reported on Wednesday. The rights group called on the Chinese government to immediately end its policies and practices of violating freedom of religion or belief, adding that all arbitrary arrests must be released immediately without any pre-condition.

2 Responses

  1. Hong Kong situation proved that Tibetans cannot live together with Chinese Taliban leaders and their CCP members. We can wait for the chance for our opportunity and it will definitely come one day. If there is a base, there is a top to reach. But we must forget the dream of living with Communist Chinese. Tibetan exile government need to change its policy and do not expect for negotiation. We must ask EU, India, United States and Japan to give recognition for exile government as the true representative of six million Tibetans. Keep the CTA as non-government Organization as a part of exile government. If we cannot play political drama based upon how CCP dance on the International floor, we will left behind forever. Middle Path, Negotiating policy are all now outdated and lets U-Turn to demand or fight for independence even if it appears impossible. Lets teach our new generation how to change impossible into possible. I trust His Holiness but I can not trust Xi Jinping and his Communist Party of China. Free Tibet, no negotiation.

  2. The regimes which are vandalising holy Sakyamuni Buddha statues are the Chinese communist Party and the Taliban regime in Afghanistan. Both of these regimes are enemies of the people. They have no mandate to rule but have imposed their dictatorial rule through the bayonet of the gun. Both of them support terror as a means to cower the population to submission. Just as thousands upon thousands of Afghans fled the country after the take over of Afghanistan by the Taliban, thousands upon thousands of Chinese people fled China to Hong Kong and Taiwan after the 1949 communist take over of China. A very big chunk of Hong Kong population are anti-communists and that is why, most Hong Kong people always frowned upon the CCP regime.
    The Chinese communists don’t deal like normal human beings in a decent and respectable ways. Their way of dealing with their opponents are through deception, lies and bluster. They believe only in violence and use violence as a means to achieve their goals. They don’t believe in the rights of human beings but only the rights of the State. The netizens of the country are only tools to further the goals of the state and the state works to enhance the CCP profile to legitimise their rule and not as a vehicle to serve the people. However, they use glib talk about serving the masses but it’s only a means to promote themselves.
    Owing to such crass communist materialistic belief in self- promotion and self-preservation, the CCP uses any tactic or means without batting an eye lid. They have murdered eighty million people during their reign of terror in the last seventy odd years but they have no sense of guilt or shame. They continue to spout propaganda of having uplifted millions out of poverty narrative to prop up and legitimise itself rule of terror.
    In 1954, Mao told the young Dalai Lama that Buddhism was poison. The Dalai Lama was shocked and felt a burning sensation all over his face when he heard these words from Mao. He immediately concluded that Mao was the destroyer of the Dharma after all!
    Today, the second Mao in the person of Xi Jinping is continuing his legacy and is emulating the evil deeds of mad Mao. Our leaders must understand that there is no hope for the survival of our most precious religion, culture and language under the infidel communist regime. Tibet expert Warren Smith has these words about the CCP’s outlook on the policies towards nationalities.
    “Integration of the nationalities into the PRC political System was a prerequisite for their Socialist transformation. The socialist transition process itself was a method to increase central control over minorities. Autonomy for nationalities was to be CONFINED TO SUCH SUPERFICIAL ASPECTS OF NATIONALITY CULTURE AS SONG AND DANCE which were in any case, according to Marxist ideology, THE ONLY MEANING OF NATIONALITY”.
    We can deduce from the above paragraph that there is no place to preserve our culture, religion and language in the PRC’s formulation of policy towards nationalities. Songs and dances are the only outward manifestation of a nationality according to the CCP doctrine towards nationalities. No wonder the CCP uses Tibetan songs and dances as a propaganda tool to hoodwink the world and Tibetans in exile to give the impression, Tibetans are keeping their culture in Tibet. It’s all propaganda and anybody can see the mass participation of people in such dances is beyond the pale of traditional Tibetan gatherings. They are all State sponsored propaganda to deceive the rest of the world.
    For far too long, we have self-censored ourselves in the futile hope that the CCP will somehow change its attitude. Alas, it’s only getting worse! The madness of cultural Revolution was condemned and the CCP disavowed it as the work of the Gang of Four. However, in Tibet, it is repeated with the destruction of the most sacred objects for Tibetans such as the holy Buddha. This is their attempt to delegitimise Buddhism which is our most sacred heritage. Since the CCP fascist regime is showing total disregard for our sacred objects of worship, is it too much to burn the effigies of the evil CCP cult leader and his blood soaked red rag?

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