19-year-old Tibetan student in India critical after immolating himself

Tenzin Choeyang.
Tenzin Choeyang.

(TibetanReview.net, Jul15, 2017) – A Tibetan student has suffered 66 percent burns after he immolated himself in the campus of the Central University of Tibetan Studies in Sarnatn, Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh state, India, on Jul 14 morning. Tenzin Choeyang, 19, was reported to have shouted “bod Gyallo! Bod Gyallo!” (Victory to Tibet! Victory to Tibet!) as he burned and also left a note saying he was doing it for Tibet.

The incident took place at 9:10am when Choeyang came out of the university’s men’s hostel and as visiting President Lobsang Sangay of the Central Tibetan Administration was speaking to students. He was reported to have poured two bottles of kerosene over himself before he torched himself and rushed out in a ball of fire.

Those who happened to be at the spot put out the flames after he had taken about 20 steps and rushed him to hospital.

Doctors at the Aditya Hospital near Banaras Hindu University where he was taken have said Choeyang had suffered 66 percent burns, with most of them confined to the lower half of his body. He was said to have suffered minimal burns to his head and facial areas. Though able to speak, doctors have said they could not guarantee yet that he would survive.

Choeyang, youngest of four brothers, comes from the Tibetan settlement in Kollegal town of Karnataka state. He is an active member of the Tibetan Youth Congress and a cousin brother of the well-known Tibetan independence activist Mr Tenzin Tsundue.


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