Illustrated White Paper on Democratic Reform in Tibet-Establishment of People's Democratic State Power

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Establishment of People's Democratic State Power


China's government Monday published a white paper on the situation in Tibet before and since1959 to mark the 50th anniversary of the region's Democratic Reform. The paper, released by the State Council Information Office, reviewed the profound changes that have taken place in the past 50 years. It also shed light on the laws governing the social development of Tibet, and attempts to rebut lies and rumors it alleges were spread by the 14th Dalai Lama and his hard-core supporters.



Rise of Tibetan Cadres
Tibetan cadres doubled after democratic reform. By the end of 1960 more than 4,400 Tibetan serfs and slaves in the region had become Tibetan cadres. Cadres of Tibetan and other ethnic groups exceeded 10,000.



Former serfs cast votes for their deputies.



Lamas of the Jokhang Monastery at the 1963 election.


Establishing the people's democratic state power, ensuring that the people enjoy rights as their own masters. Overthrowing the system of feudal serfdom, the emancipated people of various ethnic groups in Tibet established people's democratic organs of state power. By the end of 1960, Tibet had established 1,009 organs of state power at township level, and 283 at district level,78 at county level (including county-level districts) and eight at prefecture (city) level. The number of cadres of Tibetan and other ethnic groups totaled over 10,000 in Tibet. Among them, township-level ones were all Tibetans, more than 90 percent of leaders at the district-level were Tibetans, and over 300 Tibetan cadres held leading posts at or above the county level. More than 4,400 liberated serfs and slaves were trained as cadres at the grass-roots level. In 1961, a general election was held in Tibet. For the first time, the former serfs and slaves were able to enjoy rights as their own masters. Tens of thousands of liberated serfs and slaves, dressed in splendid attire, holding hada (white symbolic scarves) in both hands, actively participated in the election of power organs and governments at all levels in the region, exercising their democratic rights with great political enthusiasm and a deep sense of responsibility. In August 1965, the election at the level of township and county was completed in Tibet. One thousand three hundred and fifty-nine townships and towns con-ducted elections at the basic level, and 567 townships and towns held their people's congresses. The people's democratic organs of state power at county level were established in 92 percent of the region, with the majority of participants being liberated serfs and slaves. In addition, 54 counties held their first people's congresses to elect the county magistrates and deputy magistrates, and established people's committees. In September 1965, the First People's Congress of Tibet was convened, at which the founding of the Tibet Autonomous Region was officially proclaimed. Over 80 percent of the 301 deputies were Tibetans or other ethnic minorities. More than 11 percent were patriots from the upper strata and religious figures in Tibet. Most deputies of the Tibetan ethnic group to the congress were liberated serfs and slaves. The founding of the people's democratic organs of state power politically guaranteed the Tibetan people's rights as their own masters.


The surging tide of democratic reform took only a few years to overthrow the feudal serfdom system which had been practiced in Tibet for centuries. The reform liberated Tibet's one million serfs and slaves politically, economically and socially, brought an entirely new look to Tibet's society, and ushered in a new era for Tibet's development. It was an epoch-making reform in Tibet's history of social advancement and development of human rights, marking the beginning of rapid social development in Tibet.


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