A father of three has died after burning his body in protest at a gold mining site yesterday in Sangchu (Ch: Xiahe) County of Kanlho (Ch: Gannan) Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, Gansu Province.
Tsering Dhundup, 35, set himself on fire between 7 to 8 am (local time) on 20 November at a mining site in Ghong-ngon Lari Mountain in Achok Township in Sangchu County, sources told TCHRD.
Sources also said the Chinese gold mining activities at the sacred mountain has posed numerous problems for the local Tibetans in terms of water pollution as well as cattle grazing.In the past, Tibetan residents have submitted petitions and also held peaceful protests calling on the authorities to stop mining activities. But all efforts fell on deaf ears.
Through his burning protest, Tsering Dhundup wanted to highlight the hardship and suffering of the local Tibetans harmed by mining activities, sources said. He was also a vocal advocate for Tibet’s freedom and had strongly supported for calls for the return of His Holiness the Dalai Lama and the Karmapa to Tibet as well as the release of all political prisoners including the 17th Panchen Lama.
The body of Tsering Dhundup was taken to his home at Chu-ngen-nang (also called Khi-ngen) Village in Amchok Township. Over 300 monks from Amchok Monastery conducted prayers and other rituals as local Tibetans from surrounding villages such as Luchu (Ch: Luqu) came in to offer butter lamps and prayers for the deceased.
Tsering Dhundup is survived by his parents, wife, and three children, ages 16, 15 and eight.
Restrictions on Amchok Village has increased since another Tibetan, Lhamo Tsetan, died on 26 October after setting himself on fire in front a local government office in Amchok Township.