Reuters by Abhishek Madhukar
March 10, 2015
DHARAMSALA, India (Reuters) – For China to find a successor to the Dalai Lama would be like former Cuban leader Fidel Castro choosing the pope, the political head of Tibet’s exiles said on Tuesday, in response to comments by a senior Chinese official.
The Chinese-appointed governor of Tibet on Monday accused the exiled Tibetan spiritual leader of blasphemy for suggesting he would not be reincarnated when he died. The governor, Padma Choling, repeated that Beijing had the right to decide.
Tibetan Buddhism holds that the soul of a senior lama is reincarnated in the body of a child on his death. China says the tradition must continue and it must approve the next Dalai Lama.
“It’s none of Padma Choling or any of the Communist party’s business, mainly because Communism believes in atheism and religion being poisonous,” the prime minister of the government-in-exile, Lobsang Sangay, told Reuters.
“It’s like Fidel Castro saying, ‘I will select the next pope and all the Catholics should follow.’ That is ridiculous,” said Sangay, who resides in the Indian mountain town of Dharamsala, like the Dalai Lama.
Sangay’s comments came on the anniversary of a failed 1959 uprising against Beijing’s rule that prompted the Dalai Lama to flee to India, where he has lived since.
In New Delhi, Tibetans scuffled with police outside the Chinese embassy during an anniversary protest.
In an earlier speech, Sangay urged China to allow Tibetans to govern their region, but denied Beijing’s accusations that the Dalai Lama and the government in exile were “splittists” seeking Tibetan independence.
The Dalai Lama’s envoys were ready to engage in dialogue with their Chinese counterparts at any time, he added.
In the latest of dozens of deadly immolations to protest Chinese rule, a Tibetan women set herself ablaze and died on March 5 in Tibet’s Ngawa region, the International Campaign for Tibet said.
Exiles worry that China might simply appoint its own successor to the 79-year-old leader.
In 1995, after the Dalai Lama named a boy in Tibet as the reincarnation of the previous Panchen Lama, the second highest figure in Tibetan Buddhism, China put the child under house arrest and installed another in his place.
The Dalai Lama’s private office declined to comment. In the past, the Nobel Peace laureate has said the title could end when he dies.
He has also said he will not be reborn in China if Tibet is not free and no one, including China, had the right to choose his successor “for political ends”.
(Writing by Frank Jack Daniel; Editing by Douglas Busvine; and Clarence Fernandez)
Dharamshala: – Chinese authorities in Rebkong County, Amdho region of north-eastern Tibet (Ch: Tongren County, Qinghai Province, northwest China) have issued a notice of 20 “illegal activities related to the independence of Tibet”, according to sources in the region.
The leaked list obtained by the Tibet Post International (TPI)– which features prohibitions already in place against self-immolation protests and online advocacy of the independence of Tibet – bans activities including the publication and dissemination of articles, books, videos and audio recordings that promote “separatist goals or oppose China’s rule,” stated an anonymous source.
“Illegal associations formed in the name of the Tibetan language, the environment, and education are banned. Also banned are the organisation of gatherings or protest rallies supporting the equality of languages and the protection of animals,” the source added.
The source also revealed that the new rules stipulate: “Anyone violating these directives will be punished according to the law. Those who are organising or leading illegal activities will be severely punished according to the law.”
The list clearly shows the systematic compromise of the human rights of the Tibetan people by the Chinese government.
The notice – translated by TPI – of illegal activities and explanatory notes by the Chinese government are as follows:
1. To incite or praise drastic acts such as self-immolation.
2. To hang banners, posters, leaflets or speeches for Tibetan independence.
3. To write, draw, announce, sell or distribute books, art, audio recordings or videos endorsing ethnic separatism or nationalist views that are expressed too forcefully.
4. To establish illegal organisations or activities under the name of the Tibetan language, the environment or education.
5. To incite, plan or lead illegal activities that include protests or gatherings under the banner of the equality of languages, food security or the protection of animals.
6. To use social media including QQ and WeChat to send, download or publicise images, audio or videos that contain information related to Tibetan independence. Or, using the aforementioned social media, to spread rumours that undermine national unity or create social unrest and ethnic division. Also, to let others see or use messages on your mobile or computer related to Tibetan independence instead of deleting them immediately.
7. To provide information to outside separatist groups while maintaining relations with them.
8. To read, watch or listen to information related to the idea of Tibetan independence from newspapers, television or radio from a group outside of the state.
9. To legally or illegally travel outside of the state to participate in any religious events.
10. To hang images of the 14th Dalai Lama or of people fighting for Tibetan independence in public places.
11. To place stickers, posters or banners and/or to play music that implies support for Tibetan independence in automobiles.
12. To pray using butter lamp and smoke offerings, to chanting or to free animals for self-immolators or to express condolences to their families.
13. To plan to collect donations from separatist groups and individuals outside.
14. To publicise nationalist views that are expressed too forcefully and to discuss Tibetan independence in schools.
15. To use the force of religion and its tenets as well as race to destabilise societal order. Also, under the banner of ethnicity, illegal activities toward government officials and the public include to warn them, take revenge on them and to consider them as enemies.
16. To continue to maintain contact with outside separatist forces and to not pay attention to decisions maintaining social stability. And, to plan or force others to protest against the government.
17. To incite or plan prayer services for the 14th Dalai Lama at monasteries and public places during festivals and other holidays.
18. To incite or plan gatherings for praying for the 14th Dalai Lama under the banner of religion and tradition.
19. To intentionally create rumours about Tibetan independence by publicising messages, images, audio or videos of a variety of regular religious and traditional activities. To send biased publicity of legal activities – including reeducation campaigns, the closing of illegal organisations and the prosecution of criminals – to outside of the state and to publicise facilities to outside forces.
20. Other illegal activities include: to participate in festivals when outside forces carry out activities related to Tibetan independence. To destabilise the social order under the banner of forcing others to only speak Tibetan and to kill, sell or free animals.
The 20 points specify the illegal activities of the separatist force for Tibetan independence. Anyone violating these directives will be punished according to the law. Those who are organising or leading illegal activities will be severely punished according to the law. Those who are involved in illegal activities through force or incitement by others will be reeducated and helped to recognise the consequences of the nature of illegal activities. They will then be put under surveillance and their movements will be restricted. Those who are leading the illegal activities will have their family benefits immediately stopped. Government officials will not be severely punished if prosecuted under these directives.
Tenzin Choedrak, a Tibetan social activist died two days after his release from prison at the age of 34. He was serving a 15-year prison term for acting as a ringleader of the March 2008 protests in Lhasa, Tibet .
In April 2008 Chinese police arrested Choedak for allegedly leading demonstrators during March 2008 protests in Lhasa. He was sentenced to 15 years in prison in September 2008.
In violation of the Convention Against Torture and other international human rights treaties, to which China is a party to, Choedak was brutally tortured on a daily basis for months. As a result, he suffered from vision loss and other chronic diseases until his death. To prevent Choedak from dying in the prison, the Chinese government released him. However, two days after his release on medical parole, Choedak succumbed to his injuries.
When he was returned to his family, Choedak had dislocated jawbones and damaged kidneys. He was physically emaciated and vomiting blood because of a brain injury. All the bones in his feet were broken. This suggests that he may have been subjected to the falaka, or foot whipping, torture technique. The falaka involves beating the sole’s of the victim’s feet with a heavy cable or whatever else is available. It causes extreme pain up the victim’s body and the feet to swell. The technique was used in the PRC, the Middle East, and Romania.
Before his detention, Tenzin Choedak was an employee of a European NGO affiliated with the Red Cross in Lhasa.
New Driru measures to ‘rectify’ religious practice lead to expulsion of nuns, threats to livelihood
The new ‘rectification campaign’, dated September 12 (2014) has been imposed at a county level in Driru, Nagchu (Naqu) prefecture of the Tibet Autonomous Region, as part of a broader political campaign and paramilitary crackdown following Tibetan resistance against the authorities’ efforts to compel Tibetans to display the Chinese national flag from their homes. The campaign intensified in early October 2013 when villagers refused to fly the flags, with some throwing them instead into a river. Since September, 2013, dozens of Tibetans have been detained and the authorities have instituted more systematic oppression and deployment of troops in a bid to prevent political unrest spreading to other parts of Nagchu and the Tibet Autonomous Region.
New measures detailing expulsions of monks and nuns from religious institutions appeared to have been enforced last week when 26 nuns characterized as ‘illegal’ by the authorities were expelled from the historic Jada Nunnery in Driru on November 15 (2014) after a police raid. Many of the nuns had refused to denounce the Dalai Lama during their visit, according to Tibetan sources, and this led a work team of officials to examine the registration records of the nunnery to check that its population was in line with the officially-imposed quota of 140 nuns. It is not known whether more expulsions may follow from the 15th century nunnery, which offers Tibetan language and literature instruction in addition to religious education.
The new Driru ‘rectification’ regulations – translated into English below from Tibetan – are imposed in the context of a legalistic approach that aims to strengthen Communist Party control over Tibetan Buddhist practice and weaken religious institutions still further, as well as escalating the crackdown in lay society. Implementation of policy on religion has been particularly harsh in Tibet because of the close link between religion and Tibetan identity. Tibetan Buddhism continues to be an integral element of Tibetan identity and Tibetan nationalism, and is therefore perceived as a potential threat to the authority of the state and ‘unity’ of the PRC.
The language in the regulations on what constitutes an offence is deliberately opaque, meaning it can be subject to interpretation by local officials according to the political climate and drive to secure a conviction of a specific individual or set a particular example. For instance, the measures state that monks and nuns “who interfere in government affairs, administrative, legal or educational’ will not only be expelled from their monasteries but will also do “six months of education in law”, and may also face criminal charges (Point 41). The exact nature of the ‘interference’ is not defined, leaving it open to interpretation by the local authorities meaning that monks could be penalized for engagement in such activities as community education.
The same penalties apply to monks and nuns who “interfere in the mediation of social disputes”, although this is a traditional monastic role that is of great benefit to the community, often helping to prevent violent conflict. In the case of disputes over land, for instance, as a result of Chinese government policies of settling nomads, confiscating their land, and fencing pastoral areas, the important role played by religious figures in the community has been noted by foreign and Chinese specialists. After interviews with herders in the Tibetan area of Amdo, scholar Emily Yeh said that where disputes over pasture had been settled, religious leaders rather than secular officials had been involved.
The Driru rulings are unambiguous in their assertion of punishment for display or ‘secretly keeping’ Dalai Lama images. They state: “Monks and nuns who hang pictures of the Dalai or secretly keep them will be expelled from the monastery community, and forced to complete six months of education in the law” (Point 37).
Laypeople in Driru who are found with images of the Dalai Lama have the potentially very serious consequence of losing their livelihood: “Laypersons who hang pictures of the Dalai or secretly keep them will be forced to complete six months of education in the law, and deprived of the right to collect Yartsa Gunbu (caterpillar fungus) for two years”. After the loss of their land and livelihoods due to Chinese policies, and ill-prepared to compete with Chinese migrant workers for employment, more and more Tibetans depend on collecting the fungus called ‘yartsa gunbu’ (‘summer grass, winter worm’) to earn a living. Officials in Tibet have made similar threats before at times of unrest, but it appears to be the first time that such threats have been codified in county-level regulations. The new restrictions appear to reflect an official acknowledgement that ‘patriotic education’ alone is not effective in eradicating loyalty to the Dalai Lama and changing Tibetans’ thinking.
The 1994 Third Tibet Work Forum, a major policy meeting, led to prohibitions on the possession of Dalai Lama photographs and other religious symbols by Party members. Unlike in the Driru regulations, the extent of the ban and whom it should be applied to was ambiguous at that time; partially in order to increase its intimidating effect, and implementation was erratic. But in principle Dalai Lama pictures cannot be displayed in any government office or accommodation and today, virtually no images of the Dalai Lama appear to be on public display in the Tibet Autonomous Region, although they are still kept in private homes.
In the Driru measures, not even officials are exempt from scrutiny in enforcing such prohibitions on Dalai Lama pictures; milder punishments of ‘official warnings’ and loss of status for monasteries are detailed for those who are in charge and either do not notice or do not report cases of display of Dalai Lama images.
One of the most serious measures is the instruction that “Religious facilities such as temples, hermitages and retreat cells that are illegally constructed since January 1, 2011 must all be closed down and, within a specific time period, demolished”. It is not known how many institutions or monastic retreats may fall under this category. This also applies to ‘mani walls’ – made of slabs of stone inscribed with prayers and sacred texts.
For Tibetans, this has disturbing resonances of the past, particularly during the Cultural Revolution, when thousands of monasteries, shrines and mani walls were destroyed in Tibet, to be painstakingly rebuilt in the years of relative liberalization in the early 1980s. The 15th century Jada nunnery was destroyed during the Cultural Revolution and rebuilt in the mid-1980s, in the years of relative liberalization, by Tibetan nuns in Driru.
The Driru regulations issued in September also appear to include an admission that the Chinese authorities use the worship of a spirit known as Dolgyal Shugden to promote discord among Tibetans. The Dalai Lama has repudiated the worship of Shugden (also known as Dolgyal), while some of its followers have used the cult of worship to attack the Dalai Lama by attempting to damage his reputation, in parallel with the Chinese government’s worldwide attempts to do the same. Section 18 of the Driru regulations focuses on punishments for “those who stir conflicts among monastics and lay believers over belief in […] Shugden out of malevolence”. Inside the PRC, officials have used Shugden worship to create divisions between Tibetans, often encouraging Tibetans to worship Shugden and offering financial inducements to do so, as part of their objective of undermining the Dalai Lama. This ruling is likely to refer to be a warning to those who seek to discourage others from worshipping Shugden, indicating their loyalty to the Dalai Lama.
Party authorities acknowledge failure in controlling Tibetan thinking, loyalty to the Dalai Lama
News of the Driru measures emerged in the context of a front page article in Tibet Daily earlier this month in which Tibet Autonomous Region Party chief Chen Quanguo was cited as saying that “Those who have fantasies about the 14th Dalai Clique, those who follow the 14th Dalai Clique, and those Party cadres involved in supporting separatist infiltration and sabotage activities will be strictly disciplined and severely punished in accordance with the law.”
Chen Quanguo’s statements followed feedback earlier this month from an official work team investigating corruption in the Tibet Autonomous Region. His comments, published in the state media, connect the PRC-wide struggle against corruption emphasized by Party Secretary and President Xi Jinping with the “fight against separatism”, which in turn is allied with the political campaign to eliminate loyalty to the Dalai Lama.
In effect, this is an admission of the failure of the Chinese Party-authorities to undermine the steadfast loyalty of Tibetans – including Party officials – to the Dalai Lama. Xiong Kunxin, a professor with the Minzu (Ethnic Minorities) University, acknowledged this failure when he was cited by the state media as saying: “Some officials in Tibet still sympathize with the Dalai Lama. They continue to support the Dalai Lama out of their religious beliefs.” The professor added that those officials also support the Dalai Lama’s separatism activities. (Global Times, November 5, 2014).
The Beijing authorities take the enduring influence of the Dalai Lama among Tibetans seriously, and seek to take a position as the ‘arbiter’ of Tibetan Buddhist culture. The Chinese Communist Party, which promotes atheism, requires its citizens to ‘love the country’, in other words, to respect the authority of the Party-state, above all other loyalties. Chen Quanguo’s predecessor as Tibet Autonomous Region Party chief Zhang Qingli referred to a “life or death struggle” against the Dalai Lama.
Precedents for Driru measures: punishments affecting livelihoods and the community
The September measures are the second set of county-level regulations in Driru (Chinese: Biru) detailing collective punishment of a monastic or lay community as a consequence of an individual’s alleged actions.
For instance, the regulations in September state that if new monks or nuns are accepted to religious institutions beyond the officially-set quota, then the entire monastic community will be affected, and “monastic members of the monastery management committees will have six months salary cut”.
The earlier rulings in Driru were issued in June, a month before a major religious teaching by the Dalai Lama in Ladakh, India, and focused particularly on penalties for Tibetans who sought to attend these teachings. A partial set of these measures were translated by the Tibetan Center for Human Rights and Democracy, which reported: “The original regulation includes four chapters and 26 articles mainly focusing on the cracking down on separatism, the ‘Dalai clique’, putting restrictions on participation in religious gathering such as the Kalachakra Empowerment given by His Holiness the Dalai Lama in July 2014 in Ladakh in northern India.”
The new Driru regulations follow a set of provisions also issued at county-level in Dzoege, Ngaba (Chinese: Ruo’ergai, Aba), Sichuan Province, announcing new forms of punishment and persecution for Tibetan individuals and communities if a Tibetan self-immolator is a relative or from the local area. The measures, which Tibetan writer Tsering Woeser termed as “absurd and terrifying’ represent a form of collective punishment that could have potentially devastating consequences on Tibetan communities. Sanctions included the inability of individuals to hold government positions or receive official aid, deprivation of government assistance to villages where the self-immolation protests occur, and farmland or pasture registered in the name of the self-immolator will be taken by the authorities.
Over the past few years, the Party authorities have been implementing laws and regulations in order to “earnestly maintain the normal order of Tibetan Buddhism, and guide Tibetan Buddhism to keep in line with the ‘socialist society.’” The Driru regulatory measures provide for increased state regulation of Tibetan Buddhism, as well as an expansion of the aggressive political campaign to end the Dalai Lama’s influence among Tibetans.
The importance of eradicating religious belief among Communist Party members was also highlighted by corruption inspection teams sent elsewhere in the PRC. For instance, a team of officials sent by the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection, the party’s discipline watchdog, to eastern Zhejiang province, said it found “several party members who were religious believers”, according to the website of People’s Daily.
The Driru measures: translation into English
The document translated from Tibetan to English below consists of 12 pages of a larger document (which may be around 30 pages) detailing punishments for various activities, imposed at a county level in Driru. Due to the harsh crackdown in the area and restrictions on information, only partial copies of the new measures, which were distributed door to door by government workers in monasteries and villages in Driru, have emerged.
Driru County People’s Government
2014 issue no 166
September 12 2014
Announcement of provisional implementation of the county government decision on rectification of the religious sphere and allocation of responsibilities for subsequent maintenance of standards
Party and government offices at township level, county level, central government-regulated organs, monastery management committees and temple (hermitage) management sub-committees are required to thoroughly implement this decision.
Page 4 – ….until religious institutions can be screened for harbouring unauthorised members,none may recruit new members. If they do, they will be dealt with as follows:
1. Monasteries (temples and hermitages) will be closed for re-organisation training
2. Monasteries (temples and hermitages) will be stripped of the right to compete for ‘progressive [institution]’ and be selected as an ‘excellent’ [institution], and will not enjoy any benefits of state policies for the welfare of monasteries for three years
3. Monastic members of monastery management committees must give a written confession to the county Party committee and county Peoples’ government, which will be made public throughout the county
4. Tutors and other monks who perform [monastic] initiation ceremonies for illegally recruited monks [and nuns] will be expelled from the monastery community
5. Within a certain time period, the order will be given for a clean-up
6. If the clean-up cannot be completed within the time period, it will be dealt with as follows
3. Monks and nuns recruited illegally by force will be cleaned out, and given six months education in the law
Point 37: In cases of hanging or secretly keeping pictures of the 14th Dalai and suchlike, those in charge and those with related responsibility will be punished as follows:
(One) When township Party Committees and governments fail to discover, arrest and deal with [such cases], according to the “Regulations on punishment of administrative personnel”, the leader of the Party committee or government will be given an official warning
(Two) For monastery management committees (and appointed management personnel in temples and hermitages) who fail to discover, put a stop to and deal with [such cases], the leader of the committee (or appointed personnel) will be given an official warning according to the “Regulations on punishment of administrative personnel”
(Three) When such incidents occur in monasteries (temples and hermitages), re-organisation training will be strictly conducted there, and they will be stripped of the right to compete for ‘progressive [institution]’ and be selected as an ‘excellent’ [institution], and of the right to enjoy any benefits of state policies for the welfare of monasteries for three years
(Four) Monks and nuns who hang pictures of the Dalai or secretly keep them will be expelled from the monastery community, and forced to complete six months of education in the law
(Five) Laypersons who hang pictures of the Dalai or secretly keep them will be forced to complete six months of education in the law, and deprived of the right to collect Yartsa Gunbu (caterpillar fungus) for two years
Section 14: Concerning the allocation of responsibility for reporting the correction of irregularities in religious activities
Point 38: For villages (and neighborhoods) failing to handle the reporting of religious events to higher authorities according to the regulations, those with main responsibility and those with related responsibility will be dealt with as follows:
(One) When religious events are not reported promptly in advance to higher authorities according to regulation, the holding of those events is absolutely prohibited, and the main persons with responsibility in the “two committees” (Party and government) at village (and neighborhood) level will have their salaries suspended for three months
(Two) If religious events are held without following the internal procedure at village (and neighborhood) level, the main persons with responsibility in the “two committees” at village (and neighborhood) level will have their salaries suspended for six months, the organisers will be forced to complete six months of education in the law, and will be deprived of the right to collect Yartsa Gunbu or benefit from mass welfare policies for one year
(Three) For work teams stationed in villages that exercise insufficient oversight, do not find out about failures to report the holding of religious events from village (and neighborhood) level in a timely way, deal with them and put a stop to them, the team leader will be given an official warning according to the “Regulations on punishment of administrative personnel”
Point 39: Monasteries (temples and hermitages) failing to report the holding of religious events according to regulations will be dealt with as follows:
(One) If religious events are not reported to higher authorities promptly in advance as per regulation, on the basis of the “TAR measures on granting clearance permission for the holding of major Tibetan Buddhist events”, the holding of those events is absolutely prohibited, monastic members of the monastery management committee must submit a written confession to the county Party committee and county Peoples government, and this will be publicised throughout the county
(Two) Religious events held without following procedures…
Section 15: Concerning allocation of responsibility for correcting interference by monastics in the resolution of social disputes
Point 41: Monks and nuns who interfere in government affairs, administrative, legal or educational, or interfere in the mediation of social disputes, will be expelled from the monastery community, will do six months of education in law, and in cases of suspected criminal offences, they will all be handed over to be dealt with by the legal administration
Section 16: Concerning allocation of responsibility for correcting and rectifying unregistered temples and hermitages
Point 42: Religious facilities such as temples, hermitages, retreat cells etc illegally constructed since January 1, 2011 must all be closed down and, within a specific time period, demolished
Point 43: No temple or hermitage that has not been registered with the government may be restored, and in cases of religious facilities being restored or enlarged without following official procedure, those with main responsibility or related responsibility will be dealt with as follows:
(One) For township level Party and government offices that fail to discover put a stop to and deal with it in a timely way, the main persons with responsibility in those offices will be given an official warning according to the “Regulations on punishment of administrative personnel”
(Two) Responsible officials of the “two committees” at village (and neighborhood) level who fail to discover put a stop to and deal with it in a timely way will have their salary suspended for three months
(Three) For village based work teams, the team leader will be given an official warning according to the “Regulations on punishment of administrative personnel”
(Four) Those who organise the restoration or enlargement of religious facilities will be forced to complete six months of education in the law, and be deprived of the right to collect Yartsa Gunbu for two years
(Five) Some restorations and enlargements done according to law will be forced by the government to be demolished
[Note: not clear what this actually means]
Section 17: Concerning the allocation of responsibility for rectifying unauthorised carving of Mani [prayer] stones and piling up of Mani walls [traditional walls of mantras carved on stone]
Point 44: In the case of any incidents of unauthorised Mani stone carving and Mani cairn building, from the time these regulations come into effect, those with main responsibility and related responsibility will be dealt with as follows:
(One) For township level Party and government offices, the main persons with responsibility in those offices will be given an official warning according to the “Regulations on punishment of administrative personnel”, and the order will be given for a clean-up within a certain time period. If the clean-up is not completed within that time, Party and government officials with main responsibility and those with related responsibility will have their rank withdrawn
(Two) At village (and neighborhood) level, Party and government officials with main responsibility will have their salaries suspended for three months, and will be ordered to do a clean-up within a certain time period. If the clean-up is not completed within that time, those officials will be deprived of the right to collect Yartsa Gunbu for one year
(Three) For village based work teams that fail to stop and deal with incidents of unauthorised Mani stone carving and Mani cairn building, the team leader will be given an official warning according to the “Regulations on punishment of administrative personnel”
(Four) Persons involved in unauthorised Mani carving and cairn building will be ordered to do a clean-up within a certain period, and if it is not done, they will have six months of education in the law and be deprived of the right to collect Yartsa Gunbu for two years
(Five) In cases of unauthorised trade in Mani cairns, carving etc. the proceeds will be confiscated by the state, those involved will be forced to complete 6 months of education in the law, and if they are from outside [the county], they will sent back to their place of registered residence [Hukou]
(Six) Organisations and individuals alike must stop any transportation of Mani cairns outside the county. If any such cases are discovered, the state will confiscate all proceeds, and those responsible will be forced to do six months of education in law
Section 18: Concerning allocation of responsibility for regulating belief in ‘Gyalchen Shugden’
Point 45: Those who stir conflicts among monastics and lay believers over belief in Gyalchen Shugden out of malevolence will be punished as follows:
(One) Monastics who create conflict over belief will be expelled from the monastery community, will do six months of education in law, and if suspected of breaking the law, will be handed over to the legal administration for investigation
(Two) Lay believers who create conflict over belief will be forced to do six months of education in law, their households will be deprived of the right to collect Yartsa Gunbu or benefit from mass welfare policies for three years, and if suspected of breaking the law, will be handed over to the legal administration for investigation
Section 19: Concerning allocation of responsibility for rectification of monastics joining illegal organisations
Point 46: Monks and nuns who join illegal organisations will be expelled from the monastery community, will be forced to do six months of education in law, and if suspected of criminal activity, will be handed over to the legal administration
Section 20: Concerning allocation of responsibility for rectifying issues of collusion, disunity and disharmony by monastics
Point 47: Those who create contradictions will be expelled from the monastery community, will be forced to do six months of education in the law, and if suspected of criminal activity, will be handed over to the legal administration
Section 21: Concerning allocation of responsibility for encouraging Lamas, Tulkus [reincarnate lamas] and respected religious figures to use their influence
Point 48: For monastery management committees that fail to properly carry out means for engaging Lamas, Tulkus and respected religious figures, and fail to determine their motivation, the officials with main responsibility will be given an official warning
Point 49: Lamas, Tulkus and respected religious figures who fail to enthusiastically guide and train monks and nuns will be spoken to by the county Party committee. Lamas and Tulkus involved with splitting the country, disrupting social order etc. will be strictly punished in accord with relevant laws and regulations, and will be stripped of their titles, in accord with the law
Section 22: Concerning allocation of responsibility for rectifying and managing the selection of reincarnations
Point 50: Monasteries that contravene religious rituals, historically ascertained rules and methods of lineage succession, that do not obtain clearance permission from relevant offices or follow procedure…
Section 24: Concerning allocation of other responsibilities
Point 54: Monastics who obstruct the regular work routine or who forcibly obstruct the regular work of common believers will be punished as follows:
1. Firmly smashed according to law, and on the basis of the “two if they dos” (if they hold illegal gatherings they must be dispersed immediately, and if they commit illegal acts after being dispersed, they must be arrested immediately)
2. Monks and nuns will be expelled from the monastery community, and if suspected of criminal activity, will be handed over to the legal administration
3. For every offence committed, the number of permitted members of the monastery (temple or hermitage) will be reduced by one
4. The monastery (temple or hermitage) will be closed for rectification training
5. The monastery (temple or hermitage) will be stripped of the right to compete for ‘progressive [institution]’ and be selected as an ‘excellent’ [institution], and will not enjoy any benefits of state policies for the welfare of monasteries for three years
6. Persons residing in monasteries who have not qualified for religious personnel ID since thee years will be deprived of the right to join the monastic community
7. Monastic members of the monastery management committee must submit a written confession to the county Party committee and county Peoples government, which will be publicised throughout the county, and they will have their salaries suspended for six months
Point 55: Members of the ordinary masses who obstruct normal activity will be punished as follows:
1. Firmly smashed according to law, and on the basis of the “two if they dos” (if they hold illegal gatherings they must be dispersed immediately, and if they commit illegal acts after being dispersed, they must be arrested immediately)
2. Persons involved will be forced to do six months education in law, and deprived of the right to collect Yartsa Gunbu or benefit from mass welfare policies for three years
3. If suspected of criminal offences, they will be handed over to be dealt with by the legal administration
4. Their village will be deprived of the right to benefit from mass welfare projects and funds for mass welfare initiatives, and to qualify and be selected for “progressive household cluster” status for three years
5. The village (or neighborhood) Party secretary will be removed from office, and Party committee foreman will be removed from office, in accord with the “Law on neighborhood committee organisation”
Point 56: If travel checkpoints fail to properly prevent monastics without full qualifications from travelling, the leading checkpoint official and police officers on duty at the time will be given an official warning. If monastics without proper qualifications to travel illegally cross national borders, or go outside of their own accord for religious studies, or engage in splittist sabotage after reaching other localities, the leading checkpoint official and police officers on duty at the time will be given an official warning
Point 57: Following rectification, if individuals residing in monasteries without fully valid religious ID contravene these regulations, responsibility will be allocated on the basis of relevant measures
Chapter 3 – additional points
Point 58: These regulations come into force from the day of announcement
Point 59: These regulations should be summarised [only] with the approval of the county Peoples’ government
Driru County Peoples Government
September 12, 2014
(11 of a total 37 pages)
 The Congressional-Executive Commission on China, based in Washington, DC, documented 58 detentions related to the crackdown in Driru including 15 resulting in prison sentences of up to 18 years, according to the Commission’s Political Prisoner Database on September 1 2014. CECC Annual Report, 2014, http://www.savetibet.org/cecc-report-says-increase-in-harsh-security-and-punitive-measures-in-tibet/
 Since July, 2004, when the Standing Committee of the State Council passed the ‘Regulations on Religious Affairs’, monasteries and nunneries have been required to register with the government, and are subject to increasingly cumbersome regulation by the state, intensified by the new measures.
 The Tibetan service of Voice of America cited a Tibetan in exile saying: “Normally when the work team visits the nunnery, the nuns who do not have an official residential permit go into the mountains to hide.” But the same Tibetan,http://www.voanews.com/content/twenty-six-expelled-after-tibetan-nunnery-refuses-to-denounce-dalai-lama/2523557.html
 Due to the crackdown in the area and the dangers of sharing information, the regulations are not available in full. ICT has translated the 12 pages that have been made available, from a larger document (which may be around 30 pages).
 The political campaign of ‘patriotic education’, which involves the requirement to denounce the Dalai Lama, has more recently been termed ‘legal education’, and usually involves studying Chinese Communist Party laws and regulations.
 This is leading to increasing poverty, environmental degradation and social breakdown, as acknowledged by a UN Rapporteur after a visit to Tibet in 2010: ICT report, December 23, 2010 http://www.savetibet.org/un-special-rapporteur-warns-of-consequences-to-nomad-settlement/
 Tibetan Range Wars: Spatial Politics and Authority on the Grasslands of Amdo’ by Emily T. Yeh,http://www.case.edu/affil/tibet/booksAndPapers/yeh.tibetan.range.wars.pdf
 Yartsa gunba is bought by traders and sold to pharmaceutical companies and Chinese medicine clinics across China. It is prized for its medicinal properties. See pp 177-186 in ICT report, ‘Tracking the Steel Dragon: How China’s economic policies and the railway are transforming Tibet’, http://www.savetibet.org/tracking-the-steel-dragon/
 For instance in 2008 In Baiyu (Chinese: Payul) county in Kardze, Sichuan, local officials told people that if they did not sign their names on a petition condemning the Dalai Lama, they would not allow them to harvest yartsa gunba (caterpillar fungus), an essential source of income for many Tibetans. ICT report: http://www.savetibet.org/mass-detentions-of-monks-suicides-and-despair-as-enforced-condemnation-of-dalai-lama-provokes-dissent/
 ICT report, July 24, 2013, on discussions in Qinghai about displaying Dalai Lama pictures:http://www.savetibet.org/discussions-on-anti-dalai-lama-policy-shut-down-in-qinghai-kalachakra-in-tsolho-cancelled/
 See the new book, ‘Dolgyal Shugden: A History’ by the Dolgyal Shugden Research Society,http://www.amazon.com/Dolgyal-Shugden-The-Research-Society-ebook/dp/B00KSP5K20/ Also see ICT statement on Shugden demonstrators in the West: http://www.savetibet.org/the-international-campaign-for-tibets-statement-on-the-shugden-demonstrators
 The comments were published online in Chinese, in the state media, on November 5 (2014),
http://epaper.chinatibetnews.com/xzrb/html/2014-11/05/content_579554.htm Last year Chen Quanguo asserted the importance of loyalty to the Party state and ‘motherland’ through strengthening training in propaganda and ideology: “Construct and strengthen ‘Three Contingents’. We should establish a contingent of propaganda, ideology and culture, who are loyal to the Party, to the motherland and to the people. We should strengthen the training for cadres for propaganda, ideology and culture, appointing a full-time propaganda committee member for each town. We should put forth an effort to train a group of excellent propaganda cadres, who are politically reliable and who are in complete mastery of their professional work.” The article, translated by High Peaks Pure Earth and available at: http://highpeakspureearth.com/2013/tar-party-secretary-chen-quanguo-on-new-propaganda-and-control-of-social-media-strategy/, was published in the Party journal ‘Quishi’ on November 1, 2013.
 Xinhua reported on July 28, 2014, that: “A team of inspectors dispatched by the central discipline inspection agency have started work in Tibet, trying to expose corruption and close loopholes in Party management and government work.[…] Tibet, largely inhabited by ethnic Tibetans, is one of 10 provincial divisions to which inspection teams are scheduled to be dispatched in a period starting from mid-July.” The Xinhua report did acknowledge that the perspective of the work team was inevitably a political one, citing Ye Dongsong, head of the inspection team, as saying that “inspectors will find out whether local officials are working in a style that is harmful or leading inappropriate lifestyles. The inspection also targets officials who openly speak against the central leadership’s policies and major decisions as well as CPC principles and those who fail to effectively implement them, according to Ye.”
 The full quote, translated from the Chinese by ICT, is as follows: “We must adhere to the struggle against corruption with one hand and the fight against separatism with the other, strengthening the construction of a clean and honest Party and government, and using the anti-corruption struggle as an important safeguard in the struggle against separatism. The performance of Party cadres in struggling against separatism will be regarded as an important agenda item for clean government and the struggle against corruption. In a serious and disciplined struggle against separatism, those who are unclear about the outcome of the anti-separatist struggle, those who have fantasies about the 14th Dalai Clique, those who follow the 14th Dalai Clique, and those Party cadres involved in supporting separatist infiltration and sabotage activities will be strictly disciplined and severely punished in accordance with the law. Party cadres, especially the leading cadres at each level, must safeguard the unity of the motherland, should launch a struggle against separatism as a major matter of principle, always take a clear stand, stand firm with one vision, a resolute attitude and unity, and never be a ‘two-headed person.’”
 Meeting of Party officials on May 16, reported by Xinhua in Chinese on June 21, 2006. See ICT report for context, ‘The Communist Party as Living Buddha: The Crisis facing Tibetan religion under Chinese control’.
 In 2012, the Chinese Communist Party authorities established Monastery Management Committees headed by Party cadres and government officials in all Tibet Autonomous Region monasteries, an unprecedented measure that strengthened control over Tibetan Buddhist religion and religious institutions.
 In June (2014), ICT documented how the Chinese authorities tightened controls and restricted travel in border areas. The moves were linked to the authorities’ objectives in preventing Tibetans from attending a major religious teaching, the Kalachakra, by the Dalai Lama across the border in Ladakh from July 3. ICT report: http://www.savetibet.org/china-tightens-control-prevents-pilgrimage-before-major-dalai-lama-teaching-in-exile/ Also see ICT’s report on the Kalachakra being described as an “incitement” to terrorism: http://www.savetibet.org/new-aggressive-counter-terrorism-campaign-expands-from-xinjiang-to-tibet-with-increased-militarization-of-the-plateau/ and deployed paramilitary troops to block Tibetans from making a pilgrimage to the sacred Mount Kailash in western Tibet
 TCHRD report, July 30, 2014, http://www.tchrd.org/2014/07/china-holds-tibetan-livelihood-to-ransom-to-secure-political-stability-2/
 For analysis on the Dzoege and June Driru measures, and collective punishment within Chinese law, see the Congressional-Executive Commission on China Annual Report 2014, Tibet section, at:http://www.cecc.gov/sites/chinacommission.house.gov/files/2014%20annual%20report_0.PDF The CECC concludes that the PRC Constitution and Criminal Procedure Law do not contain language explicitly addressing collective punishment of households, communities, villages or institutions, based solely on proximity to an action the government treats as illegal, or based solely on a family relationship with a person who committed such an act. Both the Driru and the Dzoege measures contain no reference to any means by which a punished entity could appeal against a punishment.
 ICT report, ‘Acts of Significant Evil: http://www.savetibet.org/acts-of-significant-evil/
 Hu Jintao, emphasizing the Party’s role in controlling Tibetan Buddhism at the Fifth Work Forum on Tibet in January, 2010, Xinhua, January 22, 2010: “China to achieve leapfrog development, lasting stability in Tibet”; – See more at:http://www.savetibet.org/acts-of-significant-evil/
 Regulatory measures on “Tibetan Buddhist Affairs” at monasteries and nunneries in nine of the 10 prefectural-level regulations impose a complicated approval process that monks, nuns, and Tibetan Buddhist teachers must complete before they receive permission to travel to another Tibetan Buddhist institution to study or teach. Approval of the new regulatory measures is concurrent with increased government repression of Tibetan Buddhists’ religious freedom following the wave of protests (and some rioting) that began in Lhasa on March 10, 2008, and spread to locations across the Tibetan plateau.
 Cited by Reuters, November 5 (2014), http://in.reuters.com/article/2014/11/05/china-tibet-idINKBN0IP0CI20141105
 The Tibetan Center for Human Rights and Democracy translated the earlier set of regulations that emerged from Tibetan:http://www.tchrd.org/2014/07/china-holds-tibetan-livelihood-to-ransom-to-secure-political-stability-2/
 This refers to a system of reward and punishment by the authorities in which ‘patriotic’ institutions receive greater benefits and funding, while those in which monks have failed to denounce the Dalai Lama, or participated in protests, for instance, have been penalized.
 The Dalai Lama has repudiated the worship of the Dolgyal Shugden, considered by most Tibetans to be a mundane, somewhat demonic spirit. Demonstrators in the West have used the cult of worship to attack the Dalai Lama by damaging his reputation, in parallel with the present Chinese government’s worldwide attempts to do the same. Inside the PRC, officials have used Shugden worship to create divisions between Tibetans, often encouraging Tibetans to worship Shugden and offering financial inducements to do so, as part of their objective of undermining the Dalai Lama. See the new book, ‘Dolgyal Shugden: A History’ by the Dolgyal Shugden Research Society, http://www.amazon.com/Dolgyal-Shugden-The-Research-Society-ebook/dp/B00KSP5K20/ Also see ICT statement on Shugden demonstrators in the West: http://www.savetibet.org/the-international-campaign-for-tibets-statement-on-the-shugden-demonstrators/
 New measures introduced in 2007 stated that all reincarnated lamas (tulkus) must have government approval. The measures, which were deliberately targeted at one of the core belief systems of Tibetan Buddhism, revealed the Party’s agenda to undermine and supplant the Tibetan religious hierarchy and weaken the authority of legitimate Tibetan religious leaders including the Dalai Lama. The new “management measures for the reincarnation of living Buddhas in Tibetan Buddhism”, which are described by the official press as “an important move to institutionalize the management of reincarnation” were passed by the State Administration of Religious Affairs (SARA) for implementation from September 1, 2007. The Chinese authorities use the term ‘Living Buddhas’ to describe reincarnate lamas or tulkus (Tibetan: sprul sku), individuals who have consciously decided to be reborn, often many times, for the benefit of all others. ICT report, August 15, 2007, http://www.savetibet.org/new-measures-on-reincarnation-reveal-partys-objectives-of-political-control/
Tibetan monk cremated in Nepal despite China controversy
Nepal accused of bowing to Chinese pressure in refusal to allow passage of deceased monk’s body
Thousands of mourners, many in tears, gathered in Kathmandu to pay tribute to a senior Tibetan Buddhist monk whose cremation was initially blocked by Nepal, sparking claims it had caved to pressure from China.
Monks chanted prayers and played traditional music as they lit the funeral pyre under the shade of a multicoloured canopy surrounded by Buddhist flags.
Nepal, which had initially granted approval for Kunzig Shamar Rinpoche’s body to be transported to Kathmandu from neighbouring India for cremation, retracted permission two weeks later, fuelling accusations that it was bowing to pressure from Beijing.
Kathmandu denied the claims and said it did not know that Rinpoche, who died of a heart attack in Germany last month, held a Bhutanese passport when the original permit was issued.
The Himalayan nation, home to around 20,000 Tibetans, is under intense pressure from China to contain the activities of exiles who have fled their homeland.
After intense lobbying from Tibetan Buddhist scholars and followers, Nepal overturned its earlier ban but warned against hosting “any other function other than last rites” at the funeral site.
Organisers said an estimated 20,000 people attended the ceremony, including thousands who had flown in from overseas.
“He is not just a spiritual leader, but like a father to us. I had to be here,” said Joseph Chan, a 38-year-old American.
Rinpoche, 62, was the 14th Shamarpa of the Karma Kagyupa lineage, also known as the Red Hat Lama of Tibet, and one of the most senior figures in Tibetan Buddhism with followers in Asia and Europe.
“I have known him for 25 years. He has guided my studies and my life,” Jan Lazicki, a 57-year-old printing engineer from Poland, told AFP.
Rinpoche’s body was cremated in a special ceremony at the Shar Minub Institute in Kathmandu, a monastery built by him.
Organisers had put up screens live-streaming the ceremony for Rinpoche’s followers. As smoke rose above the monastery, many burst into tears while others chanted, holding prayer beads in their hands.
“He had chosen Nepal for his cremation and we are happy that the government understood and allowed this ceremony,” said Tsering Dhundup from the Shamarpa Foundation, which had organised the proceedings.
Today the International Campaign for Tibet is releasing a Special Report on China’s move to punish Tibetans allegedly “associated” with self-immolators, including friends, families and even entire communities. The report documents the impact of measures announced in response to self-immolations across Tibet (now totalling 131), which have resulted in a spike in political imprisonments, including one instance of the death penalty, and numerous cases of Tibetans being ‘disappeared’, with family and friends unaware of whether or not they are still alive, often for weeks or months. To see the full report: http://www.savetibet.org/acts-of-significant-evil/