DHARAMSHALA, April 5: Even as the situation in many parts of Tibet continues to remain tense, Chinese authorities in Kanlho (Ch:Gannan), eastern Tibet have re-launched the “Strike Hard Campaign”.
The Dharamshala based rights group Tibetan Centre for Human Rights and Democracy, in a release Wednesday said local Chinese authorities issued public notices dated March 9, written in Tibetan and Chinese languages, “encouraging” the general public to secretly report to the police any “illegal” activities aimed at harming “social stability” and “national unity”.
“This notice, issued in all eight counties of Kanlho Prefecture, is prominently displayed in the streets, on the walls and even on the tree trunks,” TCHRD said.
The notice calls on the public to promote the building of a “harmonious Kanlho” by “actively exposing the criminals” who instigate “unrest between nationalities, engaging in ethnic separatism,” and “destroy national unity.”
The notice goes on to label participation in “illegal” organisations and “fabricating and disseminating rumors on social networking sites,” as acts “endangering national security” and “harming social stability.”
“Inciting and advocating the public to split the nation by means of speeches, writings, drawings and films, etc. are acts that threaten social order and social stability,” a copy of the notice procured by TCHRD reads.
The notice also promises “personal protection” and monetary rewards up to a minimum of Yuan 5,000.00 for individuals reporting on “criminal activities.”
The Strike Hard Campaign (Tib: Dungdek Dakpo or Dungdek Tsenon; Ch: Yanda) was first launched in China in 1983 to crack down on crimes such as gun and gang crime, human trafficking, robbery, prostitution, gambling and drugs, etc.
“But in Tibet, the campaign is used for political purposes to forewarn Tibetans from taking part in any of protests and demonstrations during politically-sensitive months,” TCHRD said.
Independent human rights activists have earlier reported of a spike in human rights violations in Tibet during the implementation of the Strike Hard campaigns.
“Under this campaign, security presence increase considerably…Many get rounded up on mere suspicion in such raids,” the release said. “Arbitrary arrest, detention, interrogation and torture, dismissal from jobs and expulsion from religious institutions are common consequences of the Strike Hard campaign.”
In the ongoing wave of fiery protests inside Tibet, 33 Tibetans have set their bodies on fire demanding the return of the Dalai Lama from exile and freedom in Tibet.
A Tibetan schoolgirl, Tsering Kyi died after setting herself on fire in an apparent protest against China in the Machu region of Kanlho.