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A Tibetan monk holds a candle light to protest Chinese rule over Tibet. Photo: TPI/fileDharamsala: Chinese authorities arrested eleven Tibetan villagers from Rongsum Village of the Rongsum Township in Dayke Jodha County, eastern Tibet. Among the incarcerated were Rinchen Dorjee and Choesang, who were transported to Chamdho Town on account of their alleged involvement in a serious crime.

The remaining detainees were imprisoned in Jodha County for ceasing all farming efforts in the village as a show of solidarity with the peaceful protesters called 'earth mouse and ox year's peaceful march' and escaping to the hills on the pretext of collecting a medicinal plant called ‘cordyceps sinnensis.” The Chinese authorites attempted to force the villagers into submission but they refused to abide by their demands.

Tensions mounted between the village authorities and the residents. When the Chinese authorities endeavored to deface the holy mountain Ami Chung, the villagers protested, declaring that this would threaten the sanctity of the site. The powers that be in turn arrested eleven people, namely Joru, Dorjee, Miyang, Tashi Tsega, Nyidon, Choekyong, Gondho, Sonam Tashi, Norbu Tashi, Rinchen Dorjee and Choesang.

The Chinese demanded a fine of 2,000 yen to ensure the villagers’ release but, due to the poor standards of livelihood in the region, they could not afford to post bail. Out of desperation, the Chinese authorities have attempted to plow the fields that the villagers have deserted.

The news report was provided by Ven. Beri Jimgme, a member of the Tibetan Parliament in Exile.

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