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Tibetans join New Year celebrations

English.news.cn   2014-01-30 22:19:37

LHASA, Jan. 30 (Xinhua) -- Tang Wansen, 34, danced in a circle with a dozen of Tibetans in traditional costume at a courtyard in Sakung Village in Tibet on Thursday, the eve of Chinese New Year.

Although not a traditional celebration in Tibet, it is a significant occasion to bond with many Han Chinese who have devoted their lives to developing the plateau.

More than 65,000 public servants at regional, prefecture and county levels, many of whom are Han Chinese, have been posted to villages across Tibet since 2011.

Tang is an officer with the prefecture public security bureau - a policeman. He was posted to the village six months ago to help villagers build roads and houses and find ways to improve their lives.

Tang, from central China's Hubei Province, has not been home for 14 years since he started working in Tibet in 2000.

"I find myself one of the Tibetans, so I don't get lonely," he said.

In a small rented house in the regional capital of Lhasa, Kelsang Norbu, the landlord, is making dumplings, a traditional way to celebrate the Chinese New Year, with Wang Mengjin, 81, his tenant from southwest China's Chongqing Municipality, and Wang's family.

Wang lives with his son and daughter-in-law, who work in Lhasa. Norbu occasionally sends them fruit and vegetables.

"They rented my house, so I see them as part of my family," said Norbu.

Local Han Chinese always invite their Tibetan friends to celebrate New Year, and likewise the Tibetans invite their Han friends to celebrate Tibetan New Year, said Norbu.

The population of Tibet was 3 million in 2010, and about quarter of a million of them were Han Chinese, according to a white paper released in last October by the State Council Information Office.

Namgual Wangdrak, a calligrapher, is writing Duilian, or Chinese couplet, on red papers in the Tibetan language.

Chinese couplets adhere to certain rules as a New Year decorations. They are usually seen on the front doors to people's homes.

Wangdrak first thought about writing Duilian when he saw his Han friend writing them in 2005. Since then, he has written them in Tibetan, which is welcomed by many locals.

Hemonsikyi, 20, who runs a restaurant and hotel with his father in Ganbao Township in neighbouring Sichuan Province, and New Year for him means a golden business opportunity.

A family from Chongqing has booked into her hotel to spend New Year in a Tibetan village.

"The 12 guest rooms were all booked up during last year's Spring Festival holiday," said her mother. "Half a month earlier, several families have also made orders."

More than 3,000 tourists, most of whom are Han Chinese, are expected to come to Ganbao during the Spring Festival as more and more people discover Tibetan culture, said Guo Shun, head of the township government.

Editor: Tang Danlu
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