Tibetan Religious Leader Khenpo Kartse Released after Completing Sentence

      July 22, 2016:25 PM

Khenpo Kartse, a popular Tibetan abbot well revered around Nangchen in the traditional Tibetan province of Kham, has been released from prison after completing a two and a half year prison term.
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He was released from a prison in Chengdu on June 4th, Tibet Times reported, quoting a source in Dharamshala, India. An undated poem seemingly posted by Khenpo himself appeared on social media along with a picture taken after his release. He acknowledged the innumerable prayers, support, and concern from all his loved ones and also rejoiced at his return into the ‘human world’.
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Khenpo Kartse (Khenpo means abbot and Kartse is the shortened form of his name, Karma Tsewang) belongs to Karyag monastery of the Kagyu school of Tibetan Buddhism. He is a famous religious teacher around Nangchen. He is an environmental activist and an ardent supporter of Tibetan language and culture preservation, and was active in social work including relief efforts after Yushu County was struck by a devastating earthquake in April, 2010.

Khenpo was arrested on Dec. 6th, 2016 in Chengdu where he traveled to purchase an idol for the monastery. He was initially charged with ‘harming state security’ and was later charged with ‘absconding and avoiding arrest’. A sentence of two and a half year was levied against him after a secret trial by a court in Chamdo. His arrest led to widespread protest in the region from monks and ethnic Tibetans alike. Hundreds of monks from Jhapa monastery took to the street with banners and placards pleading with the authorities to release their teacher and ‘please consider the agony of the students separated from their teacher’ read a large banner.

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The following is a translation of the poem by Khenpo Kartse, translated into English by International Campaign for Tibet (I.C.T):

I am back once more in the human world

Due to the immeasurable concern, sympathy, support, and well-wishes of you dear ones,
I am back once more in the human world
For the duties that come with strong attachments,
For the paths we have yet to take,
For the common welfare of the human world, and individual aims for the divine,
Healthy in body and sound in mind, I am back once more in the human world

All-knowing Three Jewels,

May the light of freedom shine in our world!

By the one from Yushu, on the occasion of his own birthday

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Students demonstrating against Khenpo Kartse’s arrest.

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