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Tibet Oral History Project: Interview with Dhingri Ngawang on 5/14/2012

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Published on Mar 10, 2018

The interpreter's English translation provided during this interview is potentially incomplete and/or inaccurate. If you are not fluent in Tibetan, please refer to the interview transcript for the complete and correct English translation. Read the interview transcript in English at http://tibetoralhistory.org/Interview...

** This interview about life in Tibet was conducted by the Tibet Oral History Project. This non-profit organization aims to preserve the history and culture of the Tibetan people by interviewing elderly Tibetan refugees about life in Tibet before and after the Chinese invasion. Learn more at http://www.TibetOralHistory.org.

** Interview Summary: Dhingri Ngawang's father was a soldier in the Tibetan army and died when Dhingri Ngawang was 8 year old. His father issued an oral will at the time of his death asking the army major to take care of his children. To honor this will, Dhingri Ngawang was recruited into the army at the age of 10 years old. He talks in detail about the army, his responsibilities, the types of guns used by the Tibetan soldiers and the rankings in the army. Dhingri Ngawang's describes many aspects of Tibetan laws, including those to prevent the killing of wild animals, punishment for crimes, and the taxation system. He also tells about the crops that were grown by the farmers, the barter system between the farmers and the nomads, and the various breeds of domestic animals of Tibet. Dhingri Ngawang talked at length about his 21 years in prison, including 11 months in solitary confinement. He talks about torture and forced labor, specifically how the prisoners were made to build an electricity plant in Lhasa. He reveals how he and some prisoners formed an underground organization and how they suffered when the Chinese discovered the group.

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