A Tibetan man holds a Chinese flag in Tibetan Plateau in Yushu County, Qinghai, China | Kevin Frayer/Getty Images
A Tibetan man holds a Chinese flag in Tibetan Plateau in Yushu County, Qinghai, China | Kevin Frayer/Getty Images
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From a terribly poor state hinged on a feudal system, Tibet has modernised and grows faster than the rest of China

This article has been prompted by Jyoti Malhotra’s article in ThePrint ‘Tibetan government quietly changed its PM’s designation. India won’t be unhappy about it‘.

China’s annexation of Tibet in 1959, ousting the Dalai Lama, had attracted it worldwide criticism. The Dalai Lama fled and was granted asylum in India, where he set up a government-in-exile with its headquarters in Dharamshala.

Also read: Tibetan government quietly changed its PM’s designation. India won’t be unhappy about it

The Chinese claim Tibet on the grounds that it has been part of the country since the Yuan dynasty of the 13th century, which is disputed by the government-in-exile. But let us leave this that matter aside.

The more important question is whether Chinese rule has benefited Tibet.

The answer is that it undoubtedly has. As the Reuters’ Ben Blanchard writes: “Today Tibet is richer and more developed than it has ever been, its people healthier, more literate, better dressed and fed”.

Although Ben goes on to argue that this development masks “a deep sense of unhappiness among many Tibetans”, I will disagree. How can anyone be unhappy if s/he is healthier, better fed and better clothed?

Under the rule of the Dalai Lamas (Buddhist priests), the people of Tibet were terribly poor, almost entirely illiterate, and lived like feudal serfs.

Today, Tibet presents a totally different picture. The illiteracy rate in Tibet has gone down from 95 per cent in the 1950s to 42 per cent in 2000. It has modern schools, universities, engineering and medical colleges, modern hospitals, freeways, supermarkets, fast food restaurants, mobile stores and apartment buildings. The capital Lhasa is like any other modern city.

Also read: New Delhi worries as China digs out gold in Tibet next to Indian border in Arunachal

While the economic growth in the rest of China has slowed down to about 7 per cent, Tibet has had a 10 per cent growth rate in the last two decades.

Tibet has huge mineral wealth, which was only awaiting Chinese technology to be tapped. Nowadays, it has numerous hydro and solar power plants and industries running with Chinese help.

Tibetan literature is flourishing, contrary to claims that the Chinese want to crush Tibetan culture.

Of course, now the lamas cannot treat their people as slaves.

The so-called ‘government-in-exile’, of which Lobsang Sangay claims to be the President, is a fake organisation, funded by foreign countries. They only want to restore the feudal Tibet, ruled by the reactionary lamas, something which will never happen.

The writer is a former judge of the Supreme Court of India

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  1. Let me put this post in its right perspective! This article about the alleged economic prosperity of Tibet is not even about Tibet. Tibet is just extraneous and incidental to this article published by Markandey Katjuji! To understand the logic behind this article, one has to delve into the mindset of Markandey Katju! He has a one track mind when it comes to one Mr. Jawaharlal Nehru who occupied the chair of the Office of the Prime Minister of the Republic of India. Because his blind support of Mr. Jawaharlal Nehru is absolute, unfettered and unconditional, he has to necessarily suppress and hide all the grave crimes against India committed by Mr. Jawaharlal Nehru. He has to oppose and defame all persons who come in the way of his admiration, for reasons best know to him, of Mr. Jawahralal Nehru. That explains his defamatory statement regarding Netaj Subhas Chandra Bose! Mr. Jawaharlal Nehru’s policies pertaining to Tibet being one amongst them. Mr. Jawaharlal Nehru compromised the absolute right of India to have a sovereign, united and unified and neutral Tibet which is a neutral sovereign nation and a barrier and shield between distant far away China in East Asia and India or the Sub- continent of India. One Mr.Jawaharlal Nehru in collusion with the Chinese and the Colonial English illegally and unlawfully compromised India’s absolute and unconditional right to have a neutral and sovereign Tibet between India and distant far away China in East Asia! When the English purportedly left India in 1947, India should have immediately lost no time in denouncing and repudiating the pernicious policies of the Colonial English Government in India vis-à-vis China and Tibet. The sly colonial Government of the English had in pursuance of their diabolical game plan to perpetually bleed India for hundreds of years after they would be forced to vacate India due to the struggle of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose and the Azad Hind Fauj tried to create a façade that Tibet was historically under the suzerainty of China. Rather than denouncing and repudiating the policies of the English Government, Mr. Jawaharlal Nehru in collusion with the Chinese and the English regimes, virtually handed over Tibet to the Chinese in a platter and assisted them in their illegal military occupation of Tibet to the detriment of India. Mr. Jawaharlal Nehru tried to feign ignorance of the distinction between suzerainty and sovereignty. He was a liar and cheat par excellence! His notorious statement that not a blade of grass grows in Aksai Chin portrays his mindset vis-à-vis his intent or rather lack of it, to protect and uphold the National interests of India and her security and protection of her territorial integrity. The regime of Mr. Jawaharlal Nehru was for all intents and purposes, nothing but the continuation of the the alien English rule in India and Mr. Jawaharlal Nehru overtly and covertly collaborated and schemed with the British Government even after 1947 and continued and perpetuated their nefarious designs and interests to the detriment of India. In fact, rather than Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose being an agent or stooge of the Japanese, it was Mr. Jawaharlal Nehru who was par excellence the agent and stooge of the British Government even after 1947 after India’s purported independence. Honourable Justice Markandey Katju seems to not realise that if at all India is at all to have salvation, moksha or nirvana, it would necessarily have to stem from a future denunciation and repudiation of the anti-national policies of Mr. Jawaharlal Nehru and there will not be any short cuts or alternate routes!

  2. As the saying goes, ‘Give a taste of his own medicine’, i am unwillingly compelled to make the following remark with a hope to rekindle the sensitive and humane side of the retd.(i hope not retarded) judge for self realisation.
    Honourable judge is a Kashmiri Pundit and has a son and a daughter, i read. Now suppose, if a rich or powerful Bangladeshi neighbour in your area breaks into your house with a gun in his hand and his eyes on your daughter, occupies your house, slowly converts your kids into half Bangladeshi, calls in his other Bangladeshi relatives to live with you in your house and renames your house as Bangladeshi Bhavan and calls your home as his.
    But in return if he develops(renovates) your house, pays and helps you, (of course by a small part of the share of money he gets by mortgaging your house, rest he keeps for himself in his a/c). Will you be ‘happy’ with such ‘benefits’ that you receive from your ‘rich neighbour’; the same way you have reasoned in your above article (sic), my lord?

  3. Chinese military drill in Lhasa/file
    In his piece published on 12 August in the news-portal The Print, the former chairman of the Press Council of India and a retired judge of the Supreme Court of India, Markandey Katju, claims that Tibet has “vastly improved under Chinese-rule” and that the exile Tibetan government is “a fake organisation, funded by foreign countries” seeking “to restore the feudal Tibet, ruled by the reactionary lamas.”

    The former judge has obviously read his fair share of official Chinese propaganda and in fact the last bit about the exile government wanting “to restore feudal Tibet” is a cut-and-paste from CCP’s textbook on publicity. China’s massive propaganda apparatus has been going into overdrive spending billions of Dollars resulting in its increased reach around the world and producing over-the-top documentary films such as ‘Amazing China’, which highlights the country’s economic and technological achievements. However, one would not think that prominent Indians such as Justice Markandey would fall prey to such misinformation and to propagate it without a speck of reflection and deliberation on a matter of such importance – colonialism.

    As a Tibetan refugee, I bear the direct brunt of China’s occupation of my homeland and denial of the fundamental rights. (I was smuggled out of Tibet and have not seen my family for over thirty years!) I must also accept the fact that Tibet before 1959 was far from being a Shangrila-like realm as is sometimes painted in literature. It was a pre-modern society with the bulk of its population living as farmers and herdsman; and with a large number of people bonded to monastic and aristocrat estates. It neither pursued industrialisation nor extracted its rich mineral deposits or utilized its unimaginably huge water resources. Instead Tibetans chose to live their lives largely cocooned in the Buddhist worldview of “contentment”.

    Simply because Tibet was undeveloped and isolated did not warrant a foreign power annexing it by force which has resulted in deaths, destruction and turmoil over the decades. Scholars opine that a large chunk of Tibetan civilization and historical documents stored in monastic universities and libraries were destroyed during the Cultural Revolution and the Tibetan language is taught only up to primary levels with Mandarin as a medium of instruction in schools across Tibet. Today Tibetan culture, language and identity face severe restrictions, testified by the recent imprisonment of Tashi Wangchuk, a Tibetan language advocate, and the jailing, harassment, and torture of many writers and intellectuals.

    One must accept, as Markandey writes, that China has introduced “modern schools, universities, engineering and medical colleges, modern hospitals, freeways, supermarkets, fast food restaurants, mobile stores and apartment buildings.” But a façade of modernity must not blind our judgment of colonialism and its underlying intentions. What are schools and universities without the freedom of thought? What are freeways without freedom of movement? Can material growth compensate for the denial of fundamental rights? Tibetans are neither zoo inhabitants to be fed, displayed and lulled to dreamless sleep with “fast food restaurants” and “supermarkets” nor are we rural bumpkins to be easily coopted into “Chinese Dream”. We are human beings who simply aspire to a space to call home in which to decide our destiny in our own wisdom and in our own quietness.

    Justice Markandey, however, claims that Chinese rule has “undoubtedly” benefited the Tibetans. He further writes: “Lhasa is like any other modern city,” which is precisely the problem. Lhasa should not be like any other city. Markandey unfortunately does not choose to examine the insidious nature of a colonial power; i.e. to appropriate and alter the unique culture, language and identity of its subjects, and turn them into bastardized doppelgängers of the colonizers. China has been dragging Tibet along this treacherous path for over half-a-century and Markandey sings paeans to its actions.

    Perhaps, it is too much to expect from someone who said that “90 per cent of Indians are idiots” and that “Pakistan is a fake country” with more fools than India. And his views on LGBT are no better. Markandey recently wrote that “[n]owadays there is a lot of talk of gay relationships and gay marriages. To my mind it is all humbug and nonsense.” He asks: “Will a gay relationship or gay marriage serve nature’s requirement of continuing the species? No, it is only sex between a man and a woman which will give birth to a child, not sex between a man and a man, or between a woman and a woman.” The former judge reduces the role of men and women to that of reproduction alone. His patriarchal judgment of women is even worse. “Women who remain single are prone to have psychological problems,” he writes.

    It is easy perhaps for many of us to ignore Markandey’s comments as the bluster of a cantankerous septuagenarian. But in an age saturated with fake news and swirls of intrigue, one must kibosh them with facts and impose our lived experience. The habit of people such as Markandey to reduce everything to the binary route of black and white is an urgent reminder to us that things are far more wisely viewed in shades of grey.

    Bhuchung D. Sonam is the author of four books, including Yak Horns: Notes on Contemporary Tibetan Writing, Music, Film & Politics and Songs of the Arrow. He lives in Dharamsala, a small town in northern India.

  4. While many of the factual information given by Justic Katju are valid, the conclusions he drew seem to have stemmed from his wild imagination if not from outright lying and intentional misrepresentation out of thirst for publicity. It is true that Tibet developed economically under the Communist regime in Beijing. It is also true that the literacy rate and per-capita income of Tibetans also grew immensely in the last many decades. But how does this make Central Tibetan Administration a fake organization? Was Indian National Congress and Azad Hind Fauj fake organizations just because India developed economically under British?

    Katju’s claim that the Central Tibetan Administration wants to restore feudal system in Tibet is preposterous. Doesn’t a person of his stature know that HH the Dalai Lama already delegated all his political role to an popularly elected leader and legislature? Has he been sleeping when the Central Tibetan Administration has been advocating a well-intention-ed policy of middle way since 1980s which will not only guarantee China’s sovereignty over Tibet but also make space for Tibetans to maintain their identity and traditions. Katju is either going astray over the loss of Congress and emergence of Mr. Modi which deprived him of his eminence on the national scene or senility is holding him prisoner.

    From a proud sovereign state under benevolent spiritual leaders, Tibet has been colonized and turned into a heavily militarized zone and occupied vassal under Chinese dictatorship.
    This article has been prompted by Retired Justice Markandey Katju’s article in ThePrint ‘Time has come to acknowledge that Tibet has vastly improved under Chinese rule’.
    ‘China’s annexation of Tibet in 1959, ousting the Dalai Lama, had attracted it worldwide criticism. The Dalai Lama fled and was granted asylum in India, where he set up a government-in-exile with its headquarters in Dharamshala.’
    Today, after almost 60 long years, Tibet still remains under the iron grip of Chinese occupation and control. The Dalai Lama has since moderated and only asked for Genuine Autonomy for the Tibetan territories.
    ‘The Chinese claim Tibet on the grounds that it has been part of the country since the Yuan dynasty of the 13th century, which is disputed by the government-in-exile. But let us leave this that matter aside.’
    But why conveniently leave this matter aside? Is it not important to look at the root of the matter? China may make outlandish claims as it has with Tibet. It even claims parts of Arunachal Pradesh. As a judge, if a kidnapping case comes before the court, do you look at the welfare of the kid in his present state and disregard the fact that he was forcibly snatched in the first place and should be returned to his home, where he belongs?
    The question is not whether the kidnapping has benefitted the kid.
    Tibet today may be economically richer and materially more developed than it has ever been. But the real question is whether it has trickled down and benefitted the local people. The answer undoubtedly is no, as any Tibetan inside Tibet will attest. The people may be ‘healthier, more literate, better dressed and fed’, but as Reuter’s Ben Blanchard correctly points out, it masks “a deep sense of unhappiness among many Tibetans”.
    ‘How can anyone be unhappy if s/he is healthier, better fed and better clothed?’ Only a slum dweller would have such ruminations. As for clothing, Tibet is a cold country. They are always well clothed with yak skin and warm wool outfits. They have to be.
    Under the rule of the Dalai Lamas and Buddhist Monarchs (Choegyals) before that, the people of Tibet may have been poor, illiterate and subject to landholders. But what people in what part of the world and what country was that not the case of the period? With limited natural resources, and a small population on a cold and desolate place, Tibetans actually carved out a subsistence living far better than neighboring India and China, one can argue. Culturally, the language, literature, religion, arts and musical traditions not only flourished in the whole of the Tibetan plateau, but spread far and wide into modern day Baltistan in Pakistan; Ladakh and Zanskar, Lahaul and Spiti, Sikkim and Tawang in India; Nepal and Bhutan. Stretching rough and rugged terrains, it rivaled the great Indian and Chinese civilizations. It was no Shangrila or a Utopian paradise, but it came close to Plato’s ideal rule of Philosopher kings. It even pacified the great Mongol descendants of Genghis Khan through the Patron-Priest military alliances the Tibetans forged with the Mongol rulers. The great historical irony, alas is with a peaceful people who only wanted to be left alone gave way for the Chinese communists to invade and take over. To say that the Tibetans lived like serfs is to parrot the age old propaganda the Chinese brought with them to justify their invasion. Then they went on to confiscate all the land and property, burn down thousands of monasteries – looting their rich contents in gold and silver and killed one sixth of the population. About that much of the population today are Han Chinese migrants who enjoy the spoils of the occupation and whatever developments China brought to Tibet.
    Whatever schools and colleges they build, it’s to cater to the influx of Chinese migrants, the government cadres and the families of the huge military presence. Tibetans who get in are forced to learn Chinese and treated like second class citizens. They face discrimination once entering the job market. The hospitals are also for themselves. Most Tibetans can’t afford medical care. The roads, and railways and airports are primarily for military use. They are building more roads close to the Indian border now that should concern every Indian. It’s not to bring economic development to India, suffice to say. So what if they have supermarkets and fast food. Tibetans like to enjoy their food at a picnic on a grassland or by the stream on a lazy afternoon. Life used to be simple and leisurely. Lhasa is unrecognizable with all the so called modern amenities. Only thing that stands as a reminder of the glorious past is the Potala Palace and few sacred sites that they have saved not for their religious or cultural value, but to satisfy the growing number of tourists that flock from abroad and mainland China.
    Yes, Tibetan literature is flourishing. But the literature I have read that’s flourishing is resistance literature. It’s literature that’s underground that’s critical of Chinese rule. It’s literature that’s banned because it speaks of Tibetan identity, it’s past, it’s history. It’s literature that yearns of a future where Tibetans are free. Popular modern songs long for the day the Dalai Lama is reunited with his people. The monks are not slave owners. The Chinese are. Prominent lineage monks and their monasteries are being restored despite all the hurdles ordinary people face preserving their culture and religion. People still have not lost their faith and fallen in love with all the modern comforts. Even many Chinese are turning to Tibetan lamas and their ancient wisdom to combat modern material slavery.
    The Tibetan government in exile which is now reinstituted as the Central Tibetan Administration is not fake. The entity based in Dharamsala which you can visit is real as the Dhauladhar range surrounding it. It has been in existence since 1960 due largely to our kind host India. The burden is shared by international aid organizations and foreign governments, but that does not make it any less real. We are fully in charge. Tibetans also pay a voluntary tax to fund the administration. Today, it boasts of a fully functional democracy with the political leader directly elected by the Tibetan exile polity of which Lobsang Sangay is the current President. It is in preparation to a future Tibet with Tibetans ourselves managing our affairs, not ruled by Lamas as in the past. It runs many schools and monasteries. Our literacy rate is far higher than China’s Tibet. No other refugee community has prospered as ours.
    On this 15th of August as India celebrates it’s Independence day, let us remind the world of this historical tragedy, the last remaining country still under foreign occupation, demand that Tibet be made free. Independent. The British brought to India roads, railways, industry, health, education. But India didn’t settle for none of it. It rose from under the shackles of imperialism. Let us wish the same for Tibet.

  6. INDIA being a democratic country , right for information gives us the time and plight of different time and tides. But is it okay ! TO print and give information which hurts people sentiments and print someone’s point of view which changes the current plight of a nation which is still trying hard to get his own land back. How about the back in time when
    India too was under a rule and the source of information prints a kind of information which you are doing right now.

  7. Some one rightly said, “put katjju in a 5 star prison and he shall sing praises of his jailer.” By these yardsticks, British should have been allowed to rule India for eternity or at least sing “Thank You Lord, the King & Queen of Great Britian for English language, railways, education etc etc”. It may even sound good from this katjju’s mouth.

    Katjju should eat some kaaju himself. It will give him some extra energy and he may be able to apply whatever is left of his poor mind. He is a disgruntled old man who makes ludicrous statements to garner attention. He ran out of statements on Indian politics and wasn’t getting any attention and here you go, he makes another one on Tibet!! Maybe he has aspiration for some sponsored vacation in China.

  8. Jyoti manhotra, where did u get this from?, u probably got it in yaun figures .. there are throng of NGO WOrKING for tibet cause who are professional and risk thier and other lifes to get information… do u know how many have self immolated and killed and missing under chinease rule , how many monks had disrobed by those devil…how many budhist institution they demolished.. yet u say tibetan are happy in tibet.. u must have met the chinese over there in tibet.. coz we both have those eyes rt..

  9. I am a Tibetan refugee born in India and extremely hurt by this article written by a former Supreme Court judge. This article is so out of touch with reality on the ground. How has Tibetan literature flourished when mandarin replaced Tibetan as medium of education. Tibetans who fought for preservation of Tibetan language are put behind bar. What is the use of all the skyscraper, dams and roads when you don’t have the basic human rights. Even keeping a photo of HH Dalai Lama in your altar will land you in jail. Just imagine if tomorrow Indian govt says you can’t pray or keep a photo of lord Rama/Shiva/Ganesh in your house. HH Dalai Lama is like lord Rama/Shiva/Ganesh all in one to the Tibetan, inside and outside. He is our oxygen and the one who binds all the Tibetans around the world. Also Justice Katju seems to be unaware of the recent development within the Tibetan community in India especially the devolution of power to Tibetan elected members in 2011. This important development shows that Tibetans are ready to move away from the lama style governance and step into modern democracy. If China never invaded Tibet in 1959, we would have lacked behind in modernisation but definitely we would have been a very happy nation. Tibetans are not happy inside Tibet as is evident from the recent rise in self immolation cases. The number of self immolation protesting Chinese govt oppressive policies and denial of basic human rights since 2009 now officially stands at 152. I request Justice Katju to read more on Tibetan self immolation cases to better understand the current situation in Tibet and support Tibetans in fighting against the Chinese communist rule.

  10. The author had a bias opinions. No wonder Indian judiciary is so wrecked. Rejecting the Tibetan govt. In exile which is democratic and going in lengths to talk greatly of China, a communist is stupid. Author claims with better food and living will to lead to happy lifestyle. I want to ask this, our generation had a most comfortable life ever but are we genuinely happy. Tibet as a nation had always for centuries dedicated towards reaching spiritual dimensions. By this they were never concerned with wealth in general, so don’t put some template onto Tibet to justified your bias opinions.

  11. What about freedoms and basic human rights? I seriously doubt that you used to be a supreme Court judge sir. Of course there has been development economically but way lesser than that of mainland, infact Tibet economy is the lowest of all provinces. Tibetan language is under constant suppression under communist rule. It has only survived until now because of Tibetan people’s will to preserve their own language

  12. Yes China is doing good job.If they are in good condition what else is required?If they are from terrorism they are lucky.China knows how to deal with terrorism

  13. Your aurguments are somewhat blindsided and i guess, you are not thoroughly educated on the subject matter.
    Anyhow this is how lawyers are good at taking money from their clients(Paid well)

  14. In a way, it is better for us that Justice Katju is focused on issues outside India and we are spared of his infinite wisdom on Modi and BJP. However, Justice Katju is justifying something like emergency in India was good because trains would run on time! Chinese are of course, highly efficient in executing projects and the infrastructure development which they have carried out in mainland China and in Tibet is to be highly commended. However, this is not the issue here and that where Justice Katju has missed the point completely. A Tibetian would not mind being subjugated to his feudal lama and remain poor and backward, if he is given his religious and cultural freedom. China should have exercised suzereignty over Tibet and allowed it all the religious and cultural autonomy, rather than exercise total subjugation and colonization of Tibet. Tibet is lost if what we get after such Chinese benevolence is a Han Tibetian! I hope Justice Katju understands this and revises his judgment on Tibet.

  15. Honourable Justice (Rtd) Katju ji,
    How much should India thank the British Empire for the railways, the English language education and for tea and biscuits?
    Nothing. Infact, Gandhi says in Hind Swaraj: “Railways, lawyers and doctors have impoverished the country so much…”
    Today, Indian economy is far bigger than the UK. Just as India did not need UK for development, Tibetans too would have progressed in our own unique way had China not invaded our country. Bhutan is a good example; a country that has beautifully re-defined development by maintaining their traditional culture and also embracing modernity.
    By praising the changes China made in Tibet in 60 years and condemning India-sponsored Tibetan exile government you have pressumptiously judged that Tibetans can’t do anything. This is exactly the same point the imperialist Chinese Govt has been saying in defence of their colonial occupation of Tibet. Honourable judge seems to have borrowed a poor defence from the capitalist China that runs the dictatorial regime in the name of Communism.
    -Tenzin Tsundue

  16. Its really unfortunate a man of justice Katju’s stature is expressing that a well clothed well fed men and women are happy ?were you happy under British rule they were more Justice loving then the communist china do you know around 6 thousand monasteries destroyed Millions killed and 155 self immolations inside Tibet:Sir, I think you are trying or provoking our patience by defining freedom and HH The Dalai Lama by insulting our rights and voice

  17. It’s hard to believe such a brain washed propaganda news specially from someone in the name of retired judge.must have lost all his case in the past for supporting criminals.PLA role is to claim their ambitious land mass during Yuan dynasty (Yuan dynasty are not Chinese dynasty.its Mongolian dynasty same like British India before)yes indeed after Chinese invasion material part there is lots of development but you should balance how much resources they have drain from Tibet and how much they brought back to Tibet, What is the reason behind their development and who has benefited most from it.without any proper research information you can’t give solid conclusion.Infact there is no need of Chinese reform in Tibet since from 13th dalai lama’s time followed by the current worked so much to bring reforms,yet from time to time Chinese pressure them not to do any so that they don’t have any point for excuses to grab Tibet for their own greed.in this 21st century Chinese road initiative project is again to bring control of neighbouring countries rather than bringing business.now some countries they are awakening.its a great Chinese geopolitical game to fool and gain controls of everything.more or less Chinese headache is not only Tibet’s problem but whole asian problem.direct effect would be on those neighbouring countries in terms of military as well as environment threat as roughly 2 billion world’s population depends on Tibet’s fresh water which now a days gets polluted by Chinese because of illegal mining and dam constructions.these days there are wars on oil and it is just a matter of time when there will be a war on fresh water is going to starts???Little knowledge is dangerous as a fog in a well thinks that his well is entire ocean.

  18. Sir, very narrow minded. You judge the people by their physical appearance. You never feel others pain unless you go through it. Sir have seen how many Tibetan people are living in those modern so all developed city. Have you ever seen Tibetan peoples still living in poor villages. For your information I want to say that now a days in all those developed cities are filled with Chinese you can count Tibetan on your finger tip. When people like you when say such things, I feel we are just living in materialistic world where they is no value of humanity. We never forget how my grandparents had lost their lives.

  19. Financial development is not everything for human beings to be happy. W all need freedom of speech and religion which is not given by Chinese. Before writing something think carefully.

      • My dear, it seems u have a lot of hatred for our lamas.. If u have truly read our history, have u ever read anything about self immolation happened in Tibet anywhere before the Chinese put their cap on Tibet. Any prostest from the so called citizens living under the lama rulers?? I agree that the infrastructure development we now see in Tibet is good for the betterment of the Tibetan people living in Tibet but FYI, there are now more number of Chinese living there in Tibet.. so who do u think Tibet is developed for??? Let’s not forget about the water projects done for the benefit of China’s mainland. We don’t have our people living in China. Nonetheless, my point here is Lamas don’t have people killed but The Chinese govt do!! N that has to be stopped

        • Yes I have and its appears you should dig more on “your” history, there where organized protest against the feudal system during the 50s for example. In Tibet of today you can be a cristian, muslim or buddhist or any kind of shit you want, no one would stop you from that. That wasnt the case in the old Tibet. Also everyone are practising their religion in Tibet, its like a madhouse and everything is about religioun, its like to only thing they do, they cant clean a table or the hotel room because its like the only thing going on is religion. So dont try to tell me they got no freedom of religion in Tibet, also mentally ill people hurting themself in the name of religion is nothing new either and proves nothing else than its a mentally ill person hurting himself. I dont know what you mean with “Lamas” dont have people killed, the lamas themself are hinding behind religion but yes their followers have killed and feudal lords in old Tibet did kill people and so did their army, different clans killing people, also the terrorists that where trained in Nepal by USA during the 50s and send back into Tibet killed people. Also “chinese” are not one group of people, China is made up of different ethnic groups, including tibetans. And its not correct that there are living more “chinese” (han?) in Tibet than tibetans, thats a complete lie. Also I have travelled around Tibet myself and I saw almost no chinese at all, and the few I saw was 100% tourists at places like potala on visit. Tibet must be one of the most ethnic homogeneous places on earth, there are almost only tibetans there, where are all those “chinese” you are talking about hiding? In caves in the desert or what? Why do you people always lie about “chinese living in Tibet”? Its a complete lie, its like saying its only white people in Kongo. I know that you use in your propaganda the idiotic “idea” that Yunnan and Qinghai is Tibet (to try to make it look like “””Tibet””” is flooden by other people, but Qinghai and Yunnan its NOT Tibet, not in any crazy way what so ever, it never will be or should be and any sane man would agre on that!

  20. What is unfortunate about this judge’s views is that he is willing to espouse the cause of development at the cost of liberty and self-determination. It’s like a slumlord saying: I took over the slum, killed, jailed or dispersed the leaders and trouble-makers, destroyed the filthy shanties, put up good looking buildings, allowed the remnants to stay for a nominal rent, even employed them in their own slum to do menial work, put up some schools for the children that did not exist before and allowed them access to a retail store. So what’s not to like? From nothing I have created something they could never even imagine.

    While I’m sure this retired judge’s credentials are impeccable, his inability to differentiate impartial development support from Chinese vested interests is regrettable.

    Peccavisti, Mr. Katju, peccavisti.

  21. Measure hapiness by food and clothes is a action of ignorant. As a human being, freedom is the main thing in one’s life. One question, why Tibetans burn themself such a unthinkable way?

    • Freedom? So you call the serfdom during the rule of the Lamas “freedom”???, and some religious idiots burning themself is nothing new around the world and proves nothing

  22. Dear Jyoti,
    Are you too consumed by richness and money? Do you value all the fancy things and not the human rights and freedom? Would you rather want to live without? Did you want live in 1940 where british are doing same as China is doing?
    I guess people forget about their past quicker then their present.

    It seems to me that as a judge, who always fight for freedom of people has forgotten their main jobs priority. It’s a shame that people become judges to earn money. And we forget our responsibility. Right is the most important otherwise, all of us are cash cow for funding cold war and collecting tax.

  23. No doubt that the writer of this article can be a guy who always use some cheap Chinese smartphones which cost something 2000 to 3000 rupees. This is the worst article i read about Tibet. This M. Katju know nothing about Tibet and Tibetan people, FREEDOM, ENVIRONMENT, etc. Hey, Katju, according to your writing it clearly shows that people of Tawang in Arunachal Pradesh are fool. But you are wrong they are proud Indian. This Katju should learn something about Tibet and Tibetan people and i m happy to help KATJU….

  24. This is the problem when some co called educated men measure happiness from the materials prospective and ignore cultures, religions, lifestyle etc. Americans , Japanese and those highly developed country people must be the happiest people in this world because they have the highest materials gain but we see high numbers of suicide, unstable mind in these countries. Anyways, this so called ultra modern world has so many people who are over educated on certain things and under educated on many things.

  25. China is feeding little fish so called growth to pull out big fish. Growth is little fish and minerals metals gold are being dug out to carry to china as big fish, a wealth of Tibet. A crime over sober Tibetans and Tibet.

  26. The writer is said to be a former judge of the supreme Court and to see such scurrilous propaganda is very despondent.

    1. Tibet’s economics and infrastructures has improved a lot! No arguing there. But if that is really good then why more than 140 heartbreaking self immolations has happened in Tibet after Chinese occupation of Tibet?

    2. The illiteracy may be down to 42% yet Tibetans are not allowed to learn their own language. The aim of educating Tibetans without their own language is to eradicate Tibetan people.

    3. Tibet has huge mineral wealth and we left it as it is in respect to the nature and religion reasons. And all these natural resources are taken for chinese profit, not Tibetans.

    4. Central Tibetan Administration (cta) is a government in exile for more than 200,000 Tibetans outside Tibet. If it is
    fake organisation, funded by foreign countries why has indian government done nothing for more than 5 decades?

    The writer is either very uneducated on Tibet and Tibetans and never did a proper research. Or just want to write a scurrilous propaganda.

    • The one who are uneducated and spreading propaganda lies are YOU. First of all, you claim tibetans are not allowed to learn their own language…. Thats just bullshit, chinese are just the second language just like english is in many parts of the world, tibetans use their language in Tibet, everyone speaks it and road signs are in both languages, I think you know that but chose to lie. There where no occupation of Tibet either, it was Chinese even during imperial times, China is a multi-ethnic nation. Also there are no proof that “China” are stealing profit, that “natural resources are taken for chinese profit, not Tibetans” if that was the case then Tibet wouldnt grow or develope at all, but it have developed and FAST. Every honest man can see that. You also claim that the tibetans “chosed” poverty for religious reasons (before the New China era), thats just insane. You are just one of those usefull idiots out there doing no good other than propaganda against China and modern Tibet. And yes that so called governmant in exile are a fake organisation funded på foreign organisations, how so you ask? you never heard about “The Cold War”????

  27. What utter nonsense, as is usual of the brown sahib judges we have the misfortune of enduring in India….
    Development at the cost of civil rights.
    What misfortune to have this thought as the new normal.
    Justice Katju, i hope you go to a 5 star jail to spend the rest of your life, where you have to constantly sing songs of the managers great kindness.

  28. What a “we are good for the brown” angrezi mind-set. So it is true that “angrez chale gaye, aulad chod gaye”.

  29. what about huge influx of Chinese Hans into tibet and systematically turning tibetans into minority. as far as modernisation of tibet is concern, this has more benefits more to Chinese living there than tibetans.about 80 per cent of govt employees are chinese who migrates from mainland.more over 2008 pro-independence violent demonstration in tibet was the the result of Chinese brutal rule in tibet— very soon it spreaded to 1000km far away chinese provences like sichuan ,quinghai etc.can you tell us :is a bird happy to live inside golden cage?….the then British India govt was like china developing india why it was became necessary indian people to struggle for independence?

  30. You forgot to mention human rights violations and mass killings in the name of development. Making deforestation, destruction monasteries and many more. No freedom of religion. You say development which is only materialistic. Illiteracy of English or Tibetan. Share the source please…. there are lots of aspects that Tibet got worsen under Chinese rule. Not to mention mass killings and destruction.. but still our leader and govt says we will fight through non violence otherwise it would have been 156 case of suicide bomber not self immolation.

  31. Was India happy when the British ruled India for 100 years? Was India happy when the British killed them when the Indians protested for a free country? Was India happy when they stole the resources like cotton, silk, spices,Kohinoor, etc? British also improved India by introducing English, schools, railways and what else.but Was India happy? Tell me
    How can u be so cruel and say that Tibetans should be happy under the rule of China?

    • He is not cruel, he is dull! And he wouldn’t be “a former supreme court judge” if he was under Brits. Most probably he would be a worker in the “Indian” cotton fields and would die ill and shabby at 35.

  32. Always good to hear a different perspective / point of view, to enrich the discourse. The material aspects to the development of Tibet are easily verifiable, not at all subjective. In the immediate future, India will have occasion to review and recast its approach to Tibet. To get a sense of how China feels about the existence of the “ government in exile “ being headquartered in Dharamshala, see how we react to a gathering in Britain of people urging a 2020 in Punjab, which has zero chance of getting off the ground.

  33. This argument does hold water as the aspirations of the Tibetan people is to be free just as the Indians wanted to be free from the British even though they added much needed infrastructure to the India, roads railways etc. Even now we argue that the British added this infra only to further their own interests same as the Chinese are doing now. So in similar line sir were the British wrong to leave India?


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