DHARAMSALA, Aug 11: Responding to reports in the Tibetan media about a Chinese public order forcing Tibetan residents of a restive county to wear traditional Tibetan attire with fur during a performance at a major event, the head of the county’s publicity department has denied the allegations and said that no performances were held in the county on the said day.
Calling the move a deliberate political statement against His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s anti-fur movement, Tibetan media reports quoted a Tibetan living in Europe as saying that Chinese officials in Driru county in Nagchu prefecture in Tibet’s traditional Kham province ordered Tibetan residents of the county to wear traditional Tibetan attire with fur during a performance at an event to mark the founding of the People’s Liberation Army of China on August 1 and threatened to ban them from harvesting caterpillar fungi for five years if they fail to comply.
“The local government did not issue such an order, and there were no performances on the August 1 anniversary,” Global Times, the Chinese government’s mouth piece quoted Zhou Zhanping, head of the Driru county publicity department as saying in a report today.
“The last time local Tibetans wore fur was on July 25 at a local tourism and arts festival. The performers were encouraged to wear traditional clothing during a performance at the festival, he said. Animal fur is often part of their traditional clothing, and was natural for them to use it,” Global Times further quoted him as saying.
His Holiness the Dalai Lama had advised Tibetans not to use clothes decorated with wild animal skins at the 31st Kalachakra teachings held in South India, following which Tibetans in Driru voluntarily burned all the animal skin clothes in their possession.