return to homepage SAMSARA:  A Tibetan Human Rights Archive
navigational imagemap From: Tibet and the Chinese People's Republic (1960), a report to the International Commission of Jurists by its Legal Inquiry Committee on Tibet (International Commission of Jurists, Geneva). Notes in {braces} are from the report; comments in [brackets ] are those of this editor.

Statement No. 11: A village-headman, aged 42, from Ba-Nangsang.

  (...) Chakla-Gyabo was a prominent leader who was accused by the Chinese of being a big serf-owber and supporter of Chang-Kai-Shek and of being the wealthiest man in Tachenlu. He was indeed wealthy as was apparent when the Chinese said they confiscated 3,000,000 loads of barley! The witness was invited to what the Chinese said would be a very good show. Upon his arrival he saw Chakla-Gyabo in prison [i.e. caged ], shoeless and shirtless, with is wife and children. Fourteen members of the family were thrown into the river. He did not see what happenbed to Chakla-Gyabo but thinks that he was killed. He protested to the Chinese, who said that it was the wish of the people.

Returning from Tachenlu, he was asked to stop at Minya to be shown what happened to those who opposed the reforms. A man named Wangtok was arrested and he was to be taken to a large hall where Tibetans had been assembled for the purpose of seeing what happened. Beggars who had become soldiers in the Chinese army beat him with sticks and poured boiling water on his head. He then admitted having nine loads of gold (which never turned up, the witness says). He was tied and slung up by his thumbs and big toes. Straw was burned under him and he was asked where his gold was. He could not answer this because, according to the witness, he had none.

A red-hot copper nail was then hammered into his forehead, the nail being between 3/4 to 1 inch long. He was then carried into a truck and driven away. The Chinese said that he had to be taken to Peking. The witness then went on his way.

Three hundred men were taken away towards Thagay and Litang as soldiers.

In January 1956 the monks from Litang monastery had attacked the Chinese and had been defeated. About thirty of these soldiers, together with 1,000 Chinese were in a village outside the monastery.

Sokru Khantul, a very learned and respected lama, was attacked by the Chinese because he had not prevented the monks from fighting them. He was arrested and taken into a field where his legs were tied to two pegs and his arms were stretched across a plank. Then he was shot in the chest.

The lama Lhangsar, the abbot of Litang, was accused of leading the attack. His feet were chained together and a pole was placed across his chest and arms. Then his arms were bound with wire. He was suspended by a heavy chain around his neck and hanged, although the people asked for his release.

The uze (prayer-reciter), was arrested, stripped naked and burned on the thighs, chest and under the armpits with a red-hot iron about two fingers thick. This was done for three days, with applications of ointment daily between the sessions. When the witness left after four days the uza was still alive.

This happened in private in the Chinese headquarters, where the Chinese had insisted that he should go in order to avoid mixing with people. From where he was he saw what happened and he was told not to speak to anyone about it. He told his fellow-monks so that they could escape. Although the witness is a monk and it is not customary for monks as such to be a village-headman, he had to undertake this responsibility on the death of his relative since his family was responsible for the discharge of these duties. (...)

Copyright 1997 Spencer Sundell

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