By: Tenzin Monlan.
DHARAMSHALA, August 4: The Chinese authorities in Serthar County have imposed more restrictions and heavy monitoring of telephonic and Internet communication in the area in order to curb the flow of information from the demolition site at Larung Gar Buddhist institute.
According to RFA, no one is allowed near the site or take photographs or make video clips of the ongoing demolition of the dwellings in Tibet’s largest Buddhist academy founded by late Khenpo Jigme Phuntsok.
“They are blocking all reporting on the demolition site and Chinese officials are searching for those who may have already sent images of the teardown dwellings to outside contact,” he was quoted on condition of anonymity.
“My own house, which was built my family money, was demolished with no concern at all for the people living there,” the source said while confirming that Chinese workers are still operating with the demolition drive.
The demolition of dwellings began on July 20 and have continued with the authorities saying the institute is undergoing renovation works to create accessibility in the locale in the event of fire.
According to media reports, more than 600 structures have been torn down since the Chinese government led operations began last Wednesday. As per the local sources, Chinese workers are demolishing nearly 100 to 250 houses in a day, with no sign of stopping.
The demolition drive is aimed at cutting the center’s strength to 5,000 from reportedly 10,000 by 2017. Last year, over 600 members of the center were ordered to leave, while around 400 members over the age of 60 were also asked to leave.
Similarly, the year 2001 also saw a similar dismantling of Serthar Institute. Over 8,000 students were evicted forcibly from the Institute and approximately 2,000 dwellings of monks and nuns were demolished that year.
The Central Tibetan Administration based here has not issued any statement so far on this latest development in Serthar County."