Tibetan refugees ask Nepal to address rights in new constitution
Kathmandu, Aug 7: Hounded by security forces and deprived of most of their rights as refugees, Nepal's vulnerable Tibetan diaspora urged the government to address the rights of all refugees in the new constitution, scheduled to be unveiled by Aug 31.
Making his first appearance before the media, Thiley Lama, the first Nepali to head the Tibetan Refugee Welfare Office (TRWO) in Kathmandu, made the appeal close on the heels of police arresting several people, regarded as Tibetans, for obtaining fake Nepali passports.
The TRWO, earlier known as the office of exiled Tibetan leader Dalai Lama in Nepal, was shut down by the government in 2005 under pressure by the Chinese government. Beijing says Tibet being a part of Nepal, such an office should not be allowed to exist and the then king Gyanendra of Nepal ordered the closure after China supported his bid to grab absolute power through a coup.
The Tibetan appeal came after police arrested eight people in three separate cases within the last fortnight for trying to obtain fake Nepali passports or seeking to travel abroad on the basis of fake documents.
Lama said the eight, described by the media as Tibetans, were not Tibetans. He said his office had verified their backgrounds with the Central Tibetan Administration in Dharamshala, the Tibetan Reception Centre (TRC) in Kathmandu that facilitates the travel of Tibetan refugees to India and elsewhere, and the Tibetan refugee camp in Boudha.
None of them were found to have been registered as bona fide Tibetan refugees. Also, the documents two of them were carrying, said to be issued by the TRC, were fake, Lama said.
The incident, he said, tarnished the image of Tibetans living a life in exile in Nepal and other countries.
The community is now asking Nepal's communist government to resume issuing identity cards to Tibetan refugees living in Nepal.
In 1998, Nepal last issued the IDs, stopping the distribution subsequently under Beijing's instructions. China refuses to accept the existence of Tibetan refugees, saying they are illegal immigrants who should be punished strictly as per the law of the land.
There are over 20,000 Tibetan refugees living in Nepal and the halt in the issuance of IDs have left hundreds in the lurch.
Hospitals could refuse to register the birth of children, banks refuse to let them open accounts and government schools refuse to admit refugee children. In addition, the government doesn't allow them to work or run businesses, creating unemployment and waste of human resources.
Human rights activists have condemned Nepal's double standard towards refugees. While it allowed Bhutanese refugees to be resettled in western countries, it has however blocked the bid by the US to offer Tibetan refugees a new life in American cities after China opposed the move. IANS
Lastupdate on : Sun, 7 Aug 2011 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Sun, 7 Aug 2011 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Mon, 8 Aug 2011 00:00:00 IST
- MORE FROM SOUTH ASIA
Bandipora, Aug 7: The increasing pollution in the Asia’s largest fresh water lake, Wular here has adversely affected the production of water chestnut, threatening the livelihood of scores of people.  More
- Srinagar City
Residents aghast, seek fibre glass walling; Will do it, assures minister
Srinagar, Aug 7: At a time when governments even in the metropolitan cities like New Delhi are so sensitive towards people’s privacy living in the vicinity of flyovers, that they got fibre glass walls More
‘PAY IMMEDIATE HEED ON CONSUMER COMPLAINTS’
Jammu, Aug 7: Minister of State for Consumer Affairs and Public Distribution and Power, Shabir Ahmad Khan directed CA&PD authorities to keep close vision on black marketing and undue profiteering at More
- South Asia
Karachi, Aug 7: The death toll in the Lyari building in Karachi collapse rose to 21 as rescuers recovered nine more bodies from the rubble and feared more people, alive or dead, were still under the debris More
Kabul, Aug 7: Insurgents shot down a US military helicopter during fighting in eastern Afghanistan, killing 30 Americans, most of them belonging to the same elite Navy SEALs unit that killed Osama Bin More