A Tibetan youth (Tsultrim Chokden) was murdered on the night of October 30th by three Indians on Bhagsu Road (near Green Hotel), Mcleod Ganj, Dharamsala. The three accused were identified as Kailash Kumar (from Dosalani village near McLeodganj), Rinku (from Balaher village near Shahpur) and Mahesh Kumar (from Ramba village). 


Photo: The prime accused Kailash Kumar

The incidence took place around 11PM when the deceased Tsultrim Chokden (aged 29) was returning with his Tibetan female friend after a dinner at a restaurant. The two Tibetans were allegedly teased by the three Indians on a motorbike near the Tibetan Settlement office where the deceased and the three Indians had a verbal argument after which the two proceeded on to Amdo village.

The two managed to pass just a few meters ahead of the Green Hotel when the three men came from behind on bike and beat the deceased and stabbed him on the abdomen, according to sources. The girl was pushed aside when she tried to intervene. The three Indian youth then fled the scene on bike towards Bhagsu Nath.

The victim was pronounced dead on arrival at the Dharamshala zonal hospital around midnight. The cause of death is believed to be excessive bleeding caused by stab wounds on the abdomen.


Saturday Evening October 31st

All the three accused were arrested by Dharamsala Police on the evening of October 31 and remanded in judicial custody after the police produced them before the duty magistrate. 


The police have registered a case under section 302 of the IPC (Murder case) which is a non bailable offence and the punishment (if proven guilty in court) can be Death, or imprisonment for life, together with a fine, 


Photo: People looking at the bloodstained road where a Tibetan youth was stabbed to death by a group of Indians on the night of 30 October in McLeod Ganj, India, on 31 October 2015. Photo by Lobsang Wangyal

The police have managed to get a clip of the youth involved in the murder of Tibetan youth from the CCTV camera installed at the main square of McLeodganj which may be used as an evidence in the court. The sources said that the police have also recovered the knife used in murder.

Monday November 2nd

Identification parade was carried out on Monday before the only eyewitness in the case (Chokden's lady friend) and all the three accused were identified.

In the evening, hundreds of Tibetans gathered for a candlelight vigil organized voluntarily by local Tibetans on Monday in solidarity with the young Tibetan man. The vigil began from town’s main square to the spot where Tsultrim Chokden (29) was stabbed by three assailants and continued till Tsugla Khang main temple. 


Photo: Kunsang Gashon

The following day also, Tibetans gathered at the main crossing in Mcleod Ganj to protest the shocking incidence. The placards read ‘Hamarai sath anyai hua hai haemin nayai chahia’ and ‘We have full faith in Indian law, it will not abandon us from justice.”


Photo: Tibetans protest at McLeodganj on Tuesday. Photo: Kamaljeet

According Tribune India, some hate messages are being circulated on the internet to which the Press officer of Central Tibetan Administration (CTA), Department of Information and International Relations (DIIR), Tsering Wangchuk responded "These are the faceless people. We have been closely monitoring the activities on the social networking sites. But it is hard to ascertain that who actually is doing this and from where."

The prime accused Kailash Kumar is an alumni of Upper TCV (Tibetan Children's Village) School, Dharamsala.


Photo: Kailash Kumar during his School days in the Tibetan School (Upper TCV School, Dharamsala)

The deceased Tsultrim Chokden is from Chusang township in Tsongon in Tibet. The deceased came to India in 2003 and went to Drepung Gomang monastery in Mundgod, South India. He was staying in Dharamshala since 2009. Tsultrim disrobed around that time and over the years had stints in Mentsekhang, a private establishment near Gopalpur, Norling Kunphenling School and the British Council in Delhi studying poetry, English and computer during those times.


Photo: The deceased Tsultrim Chokden

Tibetans in Dharamsala say they don't feel secure in the town where there is a growing resentment towards the Tibetans by the local Indians. Dharamsala attracts thousands of tourists from all parts of the world who come to see His Holiness the Dalai Lama and enjoy the scenic hill station. 

A few years ago, a Tibetan was accused of murdering a local Indian youth that led to clashes between locals and Tibetans. Many Tibetan shops were destroyed and one of the Tibetan Institutes was burned down by the local Indians. It was later found that the murderer was not a Tibetan but a local Indian man. It was only after the intervention of the Dalai Lama that peace was restored. 

The incident has brought to the fore deteriorating law and order situation in McLeodganj. Vikas, a local said, that drunk youth can be spotted in McLeodganj. Even the tourists do not feel safe travelling in the night on Bhagsunag and Dharamkot roads.


“We are keeping a close watch at the developments in McLeodganj and peace would be maintained at all costs,” SP said.

Comments (1)

  • Guest - Alana

    Good article, but just want to point out that the violence between Indians and Tibetans where the Dalai Lama intervene was more than a “few years ago”— it was 1994, more than 20 years ago. That’s an important omission.

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