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Tibet to propose setting of "Serfs Emancipation Day"
Last Updated(Beijing Time):2009-01-16 09:17
Tibetan legislators will propose to set a date to commemorate the emancipation of millions of serfs in this region 50 years ago, to help people remember the miserable life under the hierarchic social system led by the Dalai Lama and the great changes over the past half century.

They will submit a motion for this establishment on Friday at the second annual session of the regional People's Congress, the regional legislature, which runs from January 14 to 19. If approved, it would help the whole Chinese nation, including Tibetans, remember history, according to Legqog, director of the Standing Committee of the Tibet Autonomous Regional People's Congress.

The bill is expected to be endorsed at the end of the session.

The serfs and slaves were freed 50 years ago after the central government foiled an armed rebellion staged by the Dalai Lama and his supporters with assistance from some Western powers.

The People's Liberation Army quelled the rebellion, and later a democratic reform was introduced to end feudal serfdom and abolish the hierarchic social system characterized by theocracy, with the Dalai Lama as the core of the leadership.

Legqog said "Serfs Emancipation Day" would strengthen Tibetans' patriotism and expose the Dalai clique.

"Over the past five decades, Tibet's political, economic and cultural sectors have witnessed great changes ... former serfs have become masters of the new socialist Tibet," Legqog said. The 65-year old Tibetan leader himself grew up in a serf family in Tibet.

He said the Dalai Lama and his followers had constantly organized sabotage activities and had tried "by all means to prevent Tibet's development", aiming to resume feudal serfdom.

This year marks the 50th anniversary of the democratic reform of the Tibet Autonomous Region.

Pang Boyong, deputy secretary-general of the regional people's congress standing committee, said the bill proposing to set the date by the local legislature was aimed at "reminding all the Chinese people, including Tibetans, of the landmark democratic reform initiated 50 years ago".

On March 28, 1959, the central government announced to dissolve the aristocratic government of Tibet and replace it with a preparatory committee for establishing the Tibet Autonomous Region as the local government.

Migmar Dondrup, a 74-year-old Tibetan farmer from Xigaze county, told Xinhua that he had been a serf for 11 years before the serfdom was abolished in 1959. "I'd be very glad if a date were set to mark the emancipation of Tibetan serfs," he said.

Before 1959, Dondrup and his wife were slaves of the Parlha Manor. Dondrup was a servant of the manor's owner, and his wife was a maid of the owner's mistress. The couple led a hungry and miserable life at the manor.

Dondrup called the date of their liberation 50 years ago "the most important day of my life". "I was reborn," he claimed.

Dondrup's family of four generations now lives in a two-story house, with a floor space of 400 square meters.

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