In 1989, one year after she was ordained, Lhadon participated in a non-violent protest with five other nuns in Lhasa on the day that His Holiness the Dalai Lama's accepted the Nobel Peace Prize. They chanted "Tibet belongs to Tibetans," and "Long live His Holiness the Dalai Lama." She described being violently arrested by Chinese police, and taken to the police station in an army van. During the drive, she was hit on the head and kicked repeatedly.
When Lhadon arrived at the police station, she was again beaten and interrogated. She was sent to Gutsa Detention Center, where she lived for two and a half years in a cell with seven other Tibetan women.
Lhadon said that there was a fifteen to twenty minute break once a day. During this time, all of the prisoners were allowed to line up to use a community bathroom. At other times of the day, the prisoners could only use a single bucket that was placed inside their cell.
She described the food at Gutsa jail as "not hygeinic" and insufficient. She and her cell mates experienced constant hunger. She recalled a time when she argued that the prisoners should receive more food. She was taken from her cell, and beaten with an electric cattle prod.
There was also a time when one of Landon's cell mates became ill. The Chinese police refused to give her medical attention, and after two months, her condition had become critical. All of the women in the cell protested, and they were beaten with electric cattle prods.
Lhadon was transferred to Trisam prison in Tolung Dechen county near Lhasa and she spent eleven days in solitary confinement. She still bares a scar from the tightness of the handcuff that cut into her skin whenever she moved.
Shortly before she was released, Lhadon was questioned by the prison authorities. She was asked if her oppinion of the Chinese government had changed. When she replied that it had not, she was beaten.
Lhadon was released from Trisem prison after six months, and she said that she could not leave her village without permission from Chinese authorities. She decided to pay a guide fifteen-hundred Chinese yen, and travel on foot for eightteen days across the HImalayas. She now lives in Dharamsala, India.