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Nepal government assures basic documentation to Tibetans/ENG

2016. szeptember 29./Phayul.com/TibetPress

eredeti cikk

By Tenzin Dharpo

DHARAMSHALA, Sept 29: In what many consider to be a landmark development, the Nepalese government has issued a written assurance to provide Tibetan refugees living there with the Vital Registration Certificate (VRC) after a prominent NGO, UNHURED International (International Institute for Human Rights, Environment and Development) after months of lobbying, received a written consent from the government.

For more than 8500 Tibetan refugees in Nepal without any legal documentation, the decision if implemented will mean acquiring basic legal documents such as birth, death, marriage and migration certificate. The NGO posted a letter declaring the progress made on the front, “INHURED International is pleased to share you the news about the written commitment from the Government of Nepal on providing vital registration certificates to Tibetan refugees.”

The Kathmandu based NGO registered a complaint a month ago at the National Human Rights Commission after multiple cases of Tibetans facing obstacles in obtaining the basic documentations were observed during outreach efforts. “After receiving numerous cases, we lodged complaint at National Human Rights Commission. With the assistance from the commission, we have been able to receive a written letter from the Government reiterating rights of Tibetan refugees to obtain vital registration certificates. This will be applicable to all Tibetan refugees residing in Nepal,” the letter further stated.

Until the late eighties, the Nepalese government issued RC (Registration certificate) to Tibetans who came from Tibet as well as their children. A “gentlemen’s agreement” to continue allowing Tibetan refugees to cross over into India was struck between the government of Nepal and the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in 1989 following the Kathmandu government refusal to give refugee status to Tibetans.

However, that agreement has since been pushed aside after Nepal started receiving a lucrative patronage from China. The influx of Tibetan refugees has been severely restricted with the once average of 2000 immigrants a year dropping to a lowly 200 since 2008 Uprising in Tibet. In an extreme case of heavy handedness, 18 Tibetans including some children in 2003, and 3 Tibetans in 2010 were detained by Nepalese police and handed over to Chinese authorities in Tibet.

Nepal which is home to more than 20,000 Tibetans who either came across the border or were born to settlers, are finding it hard to sustain a free and normal existence. The Nepalese government’s treatment of the Tibetan refugees has taken a turn for the worse in the last few years with China pumping in cheap interest loans and relaxed FDR (Foreign Direct Investment) schemes in exchange for its will to be imposed. China’s FDR in Nepal has shot to $128 million in 2015 up from $24 million in 2014 besides perks such as a fleet of Mercedes SUVs.

But with developments such as this, the Nepalese government may yet be mending its ways and providing Tibetans who have been living in the Himalayan country for few decades with basic rights and the a little dignity to live with.

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