Name: Kanying Lobsang Deckyi
Interview Age: 66
Date of Birth: 1947
Birthplace: Ngapring, Utsang, Tibet
Year Left Tibet: 1982
Political Prisoner: Yes
Interview No.: 1D
Location: Mcleod Ganj, Dharamsala, Himachal Pradesh, India
Categories: Oppression and Imprisonment
Keywords: brutality/torture, childhood memories, festivals, Chinese -- first appearance of, forced labor, government/administration, imprisonment, Chinese -- oppression under, Panchen Lama, starvation, taxes, thamzing/struggle sessions, Utsang, wealthy/upper class
Kanying Lobsang Deckyi was born into a very affluent aristocrat family in Thoe Tsaprang of Ngari district. Until the age of 13, she led an extremely luxurious life because her family had many servants and five palatial buildings. She fondly recalls the grand celebrations of the Tibetan New Year with a variety of music, food and chang 'home-brewed beer.'
Kanying Lobsang Deckyi describes the responsibilities of her father, the District Administrator of the region, which entailed collecting taxes on behalf of the government. She was able to visit the Panchen Lama several times with her father and remembers the advice he offered. She believes that the administrators governed compassionately including offering of loans and exempting major debts. She describes how when the Chinese first appeared they tried to entice the aristocrats by holding elaborate dances and giving them dhayen 'Chinese silver coins.'
Accused of supporting the rebellion in Lhasa, Kanying Lobsang father was tortured and imprisoned for 18 years while Lobsang Deckyi was banished to a desolate place called Gyisha. She struggled to survive by farming, but most of the crops that grew were taken by the Chinese. Her son and husband both died from starvation. She was publicly beaten many times, resulting in many scars and blindness in one eye. She finally escaped into exile in 1982 with four children.
- Rebecca Novick (Interviewer)
- Ronny Novick (Videographer)
- Thupten Kelsang Dakpa (Interpreter)