ISC/NKT MISUNDERSTANDINGS ABOUT MEDICAL SERVICES IN THE TIBETAN MONASTERIES IN INDIA CLARIFIED
by Carol McQuire
The latest ISC/NKT leaflet ‘evidence’ of prejudice against Shugden practitioners states that the Shugden monks and families in India do not get access to proper medical treatment. This is not the case. The actual situation is more complex and culturally distinct to the medical system the ISC/NKT are accustomed to.
In the the images of discrimination section of the ISC leaflet there is a picture of a sign supposedly at the Drepung Loseling Clinic at Mundgod Tibetan Settlement.
These signs are unfortunate as they can be easily misunderstood; all this means in practice is that Shar Gaden and Serpom monks use the clinic of their own colleges – just like every other Tibetan monk.
Through fundraising there are now 5 new clinics for monastics all providing the same services.
Each of the large Gelug Monasteries there (Gaden Shartse, Gaden Jangtse, Drepung Gomang, Drepung Loseling) has its own clinic providing basic medical care. They all use their own clinics.
It’s Tibetan style: Sera Jey monks go to the Sera Jey Clinic, Sera Mey monks to Sera Mey clinic. Penor Rinpoche’s Nyingma monastery has its own hospital. Ganden Jangtse monks go to Jangtse clinic, Gaden Shartse to Shartse clinic.
Laypeople go to settlement clinics in either Bylakuppe or Mundgod, neither of which have signs at the moment.
Many monks prefer Indian GPs in the nearby towns to the clinics, as there are less wait times.
For anything beyond minor ailments all Tibetans are compelled to use Indian hospitals, which will treat anyone who can afford it, as the clinics are not equipped.
So the story that people are dying because of a sign at Loseling clinic is like most of the other stories the NKT/ISC present as evidence; inaccurate and misinformed.
As is so often the case, the ISC/NKT mix a little realism with exaggeration.
- Shugden Followers’ Baseless Allegations – A Rejoinder from the Central Tibetan Administration
- Dalai Lama protesters & Shugden followers – Propaganda unlimited
Information by acknowledged academic authority
- Notes on the Shugden protests by Robert Barnett
- Protests against the Dalai Lama over Dorje Shugden – An interview with Robert Barnett
- The Dorje Shugden Conflict – An interview with Thierry Dodin