HP Police detains Tibetan monks on protest march

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Dharamshala, Mar 13 (UNI) The Himachal Pradesh Police today arrested 100 Tibetan monks while trying to cross Kangra district borders in a campaign to liberate Tibet from China and mark a past uprising, police and protesters said.

''About 100 monks were detained on Dehra Bridge, about 55 km from here, this morning to prevent them from crossing the borders of the district, following a directive from the Central Government,'' a police official said.

He said the orders to prevent them from leaving the borders of the district was based on an agreement between the Indian Government and Tibetan refugees according to which, they were provided asylum on the condition that they would not indulge in any political activity.

The Tibetan marchers set off from here on Monday as part of global protests to mark the 49th anniversary of an uprising against Chinese rule and to press for their demand for independence ahead of the Beijing Olympics.

The police official said monks, along with a few foreigners, were arrested early today on Dehra Bridge as soon as they set off their journey towards Chintpurni after halting at Dehra last night.

The monks were being kept at an inn near Jawalamukhi, about 60 km from here, under Sections 107 and 151 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and would be produced before a Magistrate later in the day, he said.

The monks, on the other hand, vowed to continue with their march to Tibet, saying each one of them was determined to reach their destination.

''No one can stop us. We will reach our motherland,'' said a leader of the monks.

UNI AS JN SBC RS1620

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