Interviewee Profile

Name: Lhamo
(Alias: No)

Gender: Female

Interview Age: 75

Date of Birth: 1935

Birthplace: Reting, Utsang, Tibet

Year Left Tibet: 1959

Profession: Nomad

Monk/Nun: No

Political Prisoner: No

Interview Details

Interview No.: 11M

Date: 2010-04-04

Language: Tibetan

Location: Doeguling Settlement, Mundgod, Karnataka, India

Categories: Culture and History

Keywords: childbirth, childhood memories, Chinese -- first appearance of, customs/traditions, education, escape experiences, herding, marriage practices, nomadic life, refugee in India -- life as, taxes, Utsang


Lhamo was born in a nomadic family. As a child she grazed lambs and spent her time playing with other children. She recalls life as happy with plenty of good food to eat. She explains how the villagers elect their leader and the leader's responsibilities to the community. Marriages in those days were arranged by the parents and there was strict division of labor between men and women. Lhamo tells about nomadic village life including birthing, birth control, education and taxes.

Lhamo goes on to describe the sudden appearance in her village of Chinese on horseback, who "fired indiscriminately killing people and dogs." Then the village received the alarming news about children in Lhasa being taken away by the Chinese in vehicles. Subsequently the children of her village fled to the hills and were hidden there in bears' dens.

Fearing capture, a large group of people from the village escaped and struggled to reach Mustang in Nepal. Later they were taken to Dharamsala where she describes in detail her experience of her first audience with His Holiness the Dalai Lama. She constructed roads in Manali, Himachal Pradesh as a refugee and later was sent to Mundgod.

Interview Team:

  • Marcella Adamski (Interviewer)
  • Tenzin Yangchen (Interpreter)
  • Pema Tashi (Videographer)
Interview Video

Link: Watch On Youtube

Topic: Interview with Lhamo on 4/4/2010

Length: 01:30:03

Short Videos

Link: Watch On Youtube

Topic: Murder of Tibetan Villagers

Length: 00:01:25

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