Tibetan woman dead, distressed by Chinese disappearance of her abbot brother

TibetanReview.net: An abbot has disappeared, along with 13 other people known to be close to him, in Zatoe (Chinese: Zaduo) County of Yulshul Prefecture, Qinghai Province, in the evening of Mar 8. He is believed to have been taken away by Chinese police in a raid, according to Dharamsala-based Tibetan centre for Human Rights and Democracy Mar 21. It added that his sister died due to intense distress after she repeatedly visited the local police station in a futile attempt to get information about her brother.

The centre said the abbot, Khenpo Gyewala, 44, of Gyegyel Zogchen Monastery, is a highly-respected scholar and had founded and taught at a school to educate the local Tibetan children in Tibetan language,  culture and related subjects. The around 800 students at his Munsel School were said to be nomadic children as well as children of Tibetan nomads settled down in the Zatoe County area  by the Chinese authorities.

The Khenpo’s trouble with the authorities began when the latter issued an order banning his holding on Feb 9 of the Dechen Shingdrup, a popular local religious festival begun three years ago and presided over by all the major religious personalities in the area. The ban provoked about 1,000
Munsel students and local Tibetans to stage a protest march from Zatoe town to the local police headquarters situated on the other side of the valley.

Following it, Khenpo was, on Feb 10, detained by police, along with an unspecified number of teachers. They were released later in the evening after about 800 students marched to the police office and demanded that they be freed. And the police imposed restrictions on the movement and activities of the Khenpo as well as the students and the other teachers.

Following his current disappearance, Khenpo was said to have been taken out of Zatoe to another place.

Khenpo’s sister had repeatedly visited the local police office for information about her brother, but without any success. Overwhelmed by distress, she collapsed at the police office and later died in hospital.

Some 13 other Tibetans known for having worked closely with Khenpo are also reported missing, taken away at different times over the weeks. They included Apho (47), a monk at Tashi Lhabug Monastery; Tsering Dhundup (32), a former county government official; and Rhagpa, a teacher at Munsel School.

Khenpo Gyewala, the abbot and teacher at the Dialectics School of the monastery, had studied for many years at the famed but now officially truncated Larung Gar Buddhist Institute in Serta (Chinese: Seda) County of Karze prefecture, Sichuan Province.

Popular Posts