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‘Liberated’ Tibet still has lowest literacy rate in PRC

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(TibetanReview.net, Feb27’23) – China has for decades ranted all it could about how it liberated Tibet more than 70 years ago, made Tibetans the masters of their own destiny, introduced democratic reforms there, and made earthshaking changes and developments there “for everyone to see”. The ground reality is that the region is still not only among the poorest in the People’s Republic of China but also continues to have the lowest literacy rate among all its provincial regions while being subjected to a brutal Sinicization drive aimed at obliterating their ethnic and cultural identity.

The so-called Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR) had the lowest literacy rate throughout China’s last three censuses, taken in 2000, 2010 and 2020, according to a study by Senior Research Associate Rahul Karan Reddy and Research Associate Omkar Bhole of the New Delhi-based think-tank Organisation for Research on China and Asia (ORCA).

The TAR also had the lowest urbanization rate as only 35% of its population lived in urban areas, even though this had doubled in the preceding 20 years as of 2000 when it was 18%.

Other provinces such as Yunnan, Guizhou, Gansu and Henan also had only half their populations living in urban areas, which was well below the national average of 63%, the ANI news service Feb 26 cited the study as showing. And Yunnan and Gansu contain sizeable Tibetan areas annexed by China.

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