Tibetan religious leader arrested in Sichuan

From the Tibetan Centre for Human Rights and Democracy, May 19:

The Chinese authorities had arrested a revered religious figure in Kardze, Tibet according to reliable information received by the Tibetan Centre for Human Rights and Democracy (TCHRD).

<em>Tulku Phurbu Tsering Rinpoche</em>” title=”<em>Tulku Phurbu Tsering Rinpoche</em>” class=”image thumbnail” height=”100″ width=”66″></a><span class=Tulku Phurbu Tsering RinpocheOn 18 May 2008, around 4.30 AM (Beijing Standard Time), the Chinese security forces had arrested Tulku Phurbu Tsering Rinpoche from his residence without stating any reason. He was a highly revered religious figure in Kardze County, “TAP”, Sichuan Province.

The arrest of the prominent religious figure has brought much grief and disbelief to the local Tibetans. Tulku Phurbu Tsering Rinpoche was much loved and revered for his religious vocation and looking after the welfare of the local Tibetans in Kardze County.There has been no information about his current whereabouts, detention and well being.

Tulku Phurbu Tsering Rinpoche was a highly regarded reincarnated Tulku (Living Buddha) of Tehor Kardze Monastery. He was the chief spiritual preceptor and the head of Pang-ri and Ya-tseg Nunneries in Kardze. A charismatic figure who was a source of inspiration and hope had constructed an old age orphanage and opened two chemist shops for the local Tibetans.

Incidentally on 14 May 2008, the Chinese authorities had arrested 55 nuns of his Pang-ri Nunnery in Su-ngo Township, Kardze County for protesting against the implementation of the “Patriotic education” campaign in religious institutions.

The arrest of Tulku Phurbu Tsering Rinpoche serves as a dark reminder of China’s campaign against the prominent religious figures inside Tibet who have been viewed by the Chinese authorities as a direct challenge to their authority. In the past, many of prominent Tibetan religious figures such as Khenpo Jigme, the founder of famed Sertha Buddhist Institute, Tulku Tenzin Delek, the founder of Kham Nalanda Monastery, who championed the welfare of Tibetan people and Bangri Rinpoche, the founder of Gyatso orphanage school in Lhasa were arrested under false and fabricated charges.

The Tibetan Centre for Human Rights and Democracy (TCHRD) calls upon the Chinese authorities expresses its grave concern over the arbitrary detention of Tulku Phurbu Tsering Rinpoche. The Centre urges the Chinese authorities to respect his fundamental human rights and civil and political rights enshrined in the Chinese constitution. The Centre also urges the United Nations and its vital organs to intervene and pressurize the Chinese government to seek his immediate release from the arbitrary detention.

See our last post on Tibet.