Officials warned of Dalai worship

By Li Ruohan Source:Global Times Published: 2015-11-11 0:38:01

Party to punish members secretly holding religious beliefs

Tibet will severely punish Party members and officials who secretly follow the Dalai Lama and those who secretly hold religious beliefs, as the region pursues its efforts against separatism, the Tibet Autonomous Region Party chief said on Monday.

Such efforts should go hand-in-hand with the strict implementation of Party disciplines to make sure there is no double-talking on the issue of anti-separatism in Tibet, a major battleground against separatism, Tibet Party chief Chen Quanguo said in an interview with a newspaper affiliated with the nation's top disciplinary watchdog.

Authorities from the Tibet Autonomous Region said they will be more selective in recruiting people, stressing that candidates who participate in separatism will be dropped, in its latest move against separatism, a newspaper affiliated with the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security reported in September.

"Ethnic separatists have recently expanded their influence to the grass-roots level. Enhancing officials' awareness in fighting separatism would make them more effective," Wang Chunhuan, an expert at the Tibet Autonomous Region Academy of Social Sciences, previously told the Global Times.

However, a Tibet-based expert who requested anonymity said it's hard to identify such people because separatism is an ideological issue and is usually difficult to spot during recruitment simply through their words and deeds.

The expert added that the 14th Dalai Lama has been deodorizing his image, and local governments should provide more information of his activities in a transparent and open manner.

Chen also warned Party members and officials against participating in or supporting ethnic separatist activities, such as going on overseas pilgrimages to worship the Dalai Lama and attending prayer sessions and lectures, or sending their children and relatives to schools linked to his clique.

Local authorities have issued several rules in choosing local officials, among them to avoid participating in or supporting ethnic separatist activities; and avoid going aboard to enshrine the Dalai Lama or sending relatives or children to schools linked to the Dalai Lama.

The 14th Dalai Lama and his clique have fooled many Tibetans into attending his schools, mostly in India, to learn the "Traditional Tibetan culture." The schools are actually teaching separatism, Lian Xiangmin, director of the Modern Institute of China Tibetology Research Center, told the Global Times on Tuesday. 

Many Tibetans were fooled by separatists trumpeting "a better life overseas," but their movements are limited and they are forced to protest and join political activities against their will, according to Lian.  

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