The local police of Kyegudo have detained and kept former Tibetan political prisoner Tashi Wangchuk in custody for three days. He was also interrogated and suffered beatings. Furthermore, his privately operated car wash facility has not been allowed to open shop.
In an example of the Chinese government continuing to implement policies that oppresses and discriminates against the Tibetan people and especially former Tibetan political prisoners: On 17th October 2023, Tibetan language activist and former political prisoner Tashi Wangchuk had opened a car wash facility on his own land, the local Chinese authorities deemed it illegal and refused to register it. Furthermore, saying that he has published information related to the incident on the internet, Tashi was detained and tortured for three days.
According to the reliable source of Tibet Times, “Recently when Tashi Wangchuk opened a car wash facility in the Kyegu area, the Chinese police summoned him alleging that the facility did not follow lawful procedure. The same source described that as Tashi Wangchuk reported to the local office, after being made to needlessly do the rounds of the offices, he was detained and tortured for three days for publishing photographs of the concerned officials on the internet. His carwash facility was also not allowed to open for the same period.”
When Tashi approached the office of the local authorities seeking permission to install a solar powered heater in his yard due to the cold weather, he was told that the leaders were not present. They also informed him about the same registration documents.
Tashi Wangchuk, who was released from prison on 14th January 2020, is an activist who strives for Tibetan language and education rights. In a 2015 interview with a New York Times journalist based in Beijing, he called for the necessary protection of the Tibetan language as guaranteed in the Autonomous Peoples Charter. He cited the continued Chinese policy of eradicating Tibetan as a language of instruction in the schools in the Tibetan areas as endangering the Tibetan language proficiency of the Tibetan children. He had also attempted to contact media outlets and lawyers to raise awareness about the problems in Tibetan education. Due to these, he was secretly arrested by the Kyegu police on 27th January 2016. His family were informed of his arrest only on 24th March of the same year. He was detained and not allowed visits from his family for two years. On 22nd May 2018, the so called Kyegu People’s Middle Court sentenced him to 5 years of imprisonment for engaging in “separatist activities against the nation.”
Even though he was released on 28th January 2021, the local authorities continue to keep close surveillance of all his travel and activities. As recent reports attest, he continues to face problems in finding accommodations in hotels.