1959 Marked New Era for Tibet


What the duplicitous Pro-Tibetan Movement does not want the rest of the world to know is that news about Tibet is available through Chinese media in English (and other languages).  In Tibet since 2009, Serfs Emancipation Day has been designated as March the 28th. This was the day that millions of slaves in Tibet were freed from their suffering in 1959.  For regular updates in English, (and to access the original article below), please visit:

China Tibet Online

Tibetans have enjoyed great benefit from the rapid economic development and sound infrastructure since China started democratic reform in Tibet in 1959. Tibetans now live a free, prosperous and civilized life, and with the loving care and efforts of the Central Government, millions of emancipated serfs participated in national and local administration as masters of the country and their own destiny. The Serfs’ Emancipation Day was established in 2009, and with its first anniversary approaching, we fully realize that Tibet entered a new era on March 28, 1959.

Before 1959, most Tibetans suffered immensely from the centuries-old feudal serfdom system, which had several typical characteristics. First, the socio-economic structure was severely deformed. Tibetan officials, lords, and upper-class monks, who made up only 5 percent of the population, occupied all the land, pastures and owned most of the livestock in Tibet. Around 95 percent of the population was composed of serfs and slaves who owned no land.

Second, Tibet used to be theocratic and temples occupied 36.8 percent of Tibetan land. The upper-class monks, as principal political rulers, owned the most serfs in Tibet, and also controlled the Tibetan people tightly in the fields of culture and religion.

Third, slavery remained influential. The old Tibetan codes divided people into three classes and nine ranks. For example, serf owners could lease, mortgage, and sell serfs to other nobles freely. Poor monks were actually enslaved by upper-class monks and had neither personal freedom nor rights to read cultural or religious books.

With the issuance of a State Council Decree by former Chinese Premier Zhou Enlai, Tibet’s history was fundamentally changed. A theocratic, autocratic regime ruled by the feudal serf-owner class was overthrown and the people’s democratic organs of state power were established. The ownership system, under which, the means of production were manipulated by the “three types of lords” was abolished. The personal slavery that the “three types of lords” imposed on the serf class was repealed, and thus numerous serfs and slaves gained freedom and became the masters of their fates.

The exploitation through usury and forced unpaid labour was banned so emancipated serfs could enjoy the results of their work for the first time. The legal codes, which protected only the feudal serf-owner class, were abolished in favour of a legal system which preserves the people’s rights and interests as the masters of the country.

In summary, an era during which 95 percent of Tibetan people had no human rights came to an end, and numerous serfs and slaves were completely emancipated and became their own masters. All the accomplishments began with a great day – March 28, 1959.

Since democratic reform, huge changes have taken place in Tibet. For several decades, the CPC has created a miracle in Tibet by fulfilling what Tibet itself failed to do over its past thousands of years.

Let us look at the economic development in Tibet. Over the past 5 decades, Tibet realized the rapid development of modern agriculture, animal husbandry, industry, transportation, commerce, trade, tourism and the modern service industry by implementing large-scale socialist transformation and construction. This has been achieved through the transition from a planned economy system to a market economy system. At present, a relatively complete national economic system with Tibetan characteristics has been established.

When the democratic reform was at its initial stage, the total output value of Tibet was only 174 million yuan in 1959. However, it reached roughly 39.6 billion yuan in 2008, a 65-fold increase, adjusting for inflation, with the annual growth rate standing at 8.9 percent. At the same time, the per-capita GDP of Tibet was 142 yuan in 1959. Since, it hiked to 1,000 yuan in 1989, 5,000 yuan in 2001, and 10,000 yuan in 2006. In 2008, it further rose to 13,700 yuan, increasing by 13,558 yuan from 1959.

Since the Third National Conference on Tibetan Work, Tibet has witnessed a double-digit increase in GDP, with the annual growth rate reaching 13 percent, exceeding China’s average figures during the same period. Meanwhile, the grain output of Tibet rose from 182,900 tons in 1959 to 950,000 tons in 2008. In addition, the average grain output for 1 mu in Tibet rose from 80 kilograms in 1959 to 269 kilograms in 2007. The livestock inventory in Tibet also rose from 9.56 million in 1959 to 24 million in 2008.

People of all ethnic groups in Tibet who have witnessed the huge changes are quite clear that the new socialist Tibet would not exist without the CPC. The CPC has been protecting the fundamental interests of the Tibetan people and only by upholding the leadership of the CPC, the socialist system and the system of regional autonomy for ethnic minorities, can we guarantee a more beautiful future for Tibet.

By People’s Daily Online

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