Name: Jangchuk Nyima
Interview Age: 65
Date of Birth: 1947
Birthplace: Kham, Tibet
Year Left Tibet: 2011
Political Prisoner: Yes
Interview No.: 41D
Location: Mcleod Ganj, Dharamsala, Himachal Pradesh, India
Categories: Oppression and Imprisonment
Keywords: Buddhist beliefs, childhood memories, commune system, imprisonment, Chinese army -- invasion by , Kham, Chinese rule -- life under, monastic life, Chinese -- oppression under, starvation, thamzing/struggle sessions
Jangchup Nyima's parents separated when he was a small child. He lived with his mother and herded animals. Both of his parents supported his wish to become a monk and offered to admit him in the local monastery when he became older, but the Chinese attacked his village when Jangchup Nyima was 11 years old.
Jangchup Nyima describes how he and the people of his village fled to the mountains to escape being captured by Chinese soldiers. They hid for three years, suffering from starvation and inhospitable weather conditions. They continually moved from place to place and were pursued and attacked by Chinese troops.
Jangchup Nyima recalls finally being captured and all the prisoners were sent to a village to join the commune system. He describes life in the commune which included strenuous field work and long meetings at night where one was forced to insult lamas and former village leaders. Food rations were too small and starvation and death was rampant until the mid-1960s. Jangchup Nyima's mother died after only one year and he became so weak he could hardly walk.
Much later in life Jangchup Nyima fulfilled his wish to become a monk, travelling first on pilgrimage to Lhasa around 1995 and eventually to Dharamsala, India.
- Marcella Adamski (Interviewer)
- Tenzin Yangchen (Interpreter)
- Pema Tashi (Videographer)