Dodramog, 86, was born a serf in present-day Shigatse, in southwest China’s Tibet Autonomous Region. In his eyes, there were only three kinds of days in ancient Tibet.
He said he had been trapped in an endless circle – one day serving his lord without pay, one day working for luckier serfs to fill his stomach, one day farming on land leased from his lord, and then starting over.
“At the end of the year, I had hardly any Highland barley left after paying the rent and paying off the grain borrowed the previous year,” he said, adding that he also had to pay. all kinds of taxes on the lords.
Today, 70 years after the peaceful liberation of Tibet, Dodramog and other Tibetans are leading much better lives as the region has made unprecedented strides in social and economic development and pushed for balanced development of the people.
In ancient Tibet, the three main players – officials, aristocrats and high-ranking lamas – and their agents, made up about 5 percent of the population but owned almost all of the land, pastures, forests, mountains, rivers and plains. floodplains, and most of the livestock.
Serfs and slaves, who made up 95% of the local population, had no means of production or freedom of their own.
On May 23, 1951, the 17-article agreement was signed by the central and local governments on the peaceful liberation of Tibet.
Since that date, the Tibetan people have freed themselves from the shackles of the invasion of imperialism for good and have embarked on a brilliant road of unity, progress and development with all other ethnic groups in China. .
In March 1959, democratic reform was launched in Tibet and feudal serfdom was finally abolished. In September 1965, the first session of the First Tibetan People’s Congress was convened, proclaiming the founding of the Tibet Autonomous Region.
With regional ethnic autonomy established and through the socialist transformation of agriculture and animal husbandry, Tibet embarked on the path of socialism.
During democratic reform, Dodramog received his share of land as well as beef and mutton. “I never dreamed that I would one day have so much land of my own.”
Today, Dodramog and his three sons own 50 mu (approximately 3.33 hectares) of arable land and their annual income exceeds 200,000 yuan (US $ 31,000).
“In New China, all enterprises in Tibet have experienced unprecedented development and progress,” said Qin Yongzhang, a researcher at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.
Since 1978, the Communist Party of China Central Committee has held seven national meetings on Tibet to make important decisions and plans for the region.
Thanks to the leadership of the central government and strong support from the rest of China, Tibet is catching up with other parts of the country in various endeavors.
Over the past 70 years, the central government has issued many favorable policies for Tibet, covering taxation and finance, infrastructure, industrial development, education, health, preservation of culture and protection of human life. the environment.
In 1951, Tibet’s regional GDP was around 129 million yuan. Last year, its GDP exceeded 190 billion yuan.
Since its peaceful liberation, the region has gradually established a comprehensive transport network of highways, railways, airways and pipelines. Highways with a total length of 118,800 kilometers have been built in Tibet.
The region has also made coordinated progress in improving its environment, investing a total of 81.4 billion yuan in the region by the end of last year.
In 2020, forest cover reached 12.3 percent and the complete vegetation cover of natural grasslands increased to 47 percent.
In the new era, Tibet is experiencing sustained growth thanks to social harmony and stability.
“Since the peaceful liberation, well-balanced human development has been Tibet’s greatest historical achievement,” said Li Xuan, a researcher at the Institute of Tibetology at Sichuan University.
By the end of 2019, all registered poor residents and counties in Tibet had got rid of poverty, eradicating absolute poverty in the region for the first time in history.
Before 1951, over 90% of Tibetan residents did not have private accommodation. In 2020, the per capita living area of farmers and ranchers reached 41.46 square meters, and that of city dwellers reached 33.4 square meters.
Average life expectancy increased from 35.5 years in 1951 to 71.1 years in 2019.