China Forcing Religious Figures in Tibet to Impose its Role in Selecting Next Dalai Lama

The Chinese authorities are forcing the religious figures inside Tibet to impose its role in selecting the next Dalai Lama. While the issue of the Tibetan spiritual leader’s successor is of very much interest to China, no other party or country accepts its authority over it. According to the world report of China by Human Rights Watch, China is forcing Tibetan religious figures to endorse their policies in the matter.

China claims to be the legitimate authority in selecting the reincarnation of every Tibetan religious figures, especially His Holiness the Dalai Lama. However, traditionally and morally claiming, people as well as many governments, including the Dalai Lama himself has rejected China’s authority. His Holiness has clearly mentioned that the matter of his reincarnation will be decided by himself in consultation with the Tibetan people and the followers of Tibetan Buddhism.

As the reports suggested, China intensified its restrictions over religious freedom, speech and freedom of movement in the past year in Tibetan areas. The past year has even seen intensified surveillance of online and phone communication. Authorities in Tibetan areas have also stepped up use of a nationwide anti-crime campaign to encourage people to denounce members of their communities on the slightest suspicion of sympathy for the exiled Dalai Lama or opposition to the government.

The authorities are even conducting exams to forcibly impose the state’s policies upon senior Tibetan religious figures for endorsement.

“Tibetan Autonomous Region leaders called for an intensification of “Sinicization” policies to “strengthen the management of monasteries,” subjecting monastic populations to “legal” exams to test their competence in political reeducation, and requiring senior religious figures to endorse state policies on the selection of the next Dalai Lama.” said the report by Human Rights Watch.

His Holiness the Dalai Lama in an exclusive interview recently told that Tibetans will never accept a successor appointed by China, highlighting the case 10th Panchen Lama’s reincarnation. His Holiness spoke for an exclusive interview by Nitin Gokhale from StratNews Global at his residence of Ganden Phelgyeling Monastery in Bodhgaya.

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Editor TJ

Editor at Tibetan Journal, News/Reviews/Opinions

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