Over 260 Local Laws Enacted in Tibet in 30 Years


As the last autonomous region set in China, Tibet established its Standing Committee of People's Congress 30 years ago as the first one of its kind, ushering in the way of improving democracy and legal system. Differ from other provinces and regions in China, TAR People's Congress enjoys a "privilege" to modify and administer national laws and regulations based on its local characteristics as an autonomous region, which marks the renowned national autonomy policy in China.

Some 260 local laws and regulations stipulated in 30 years

In the summer 30 years ago, China introduced a new system-regional People's Congress at or above the county level shall set standing committee- in the Organic Law of the Local People's Congresses and Local People's Governments after amending its Constitution. 45 days following the issue of the law, Tibet Autonomous Region took the lead in setting up the standing committee of TAR People's Congress.

"TAR People's Congress and its standing committee not only perform the regional legislative power, but also enjoys the right of self-government of local matters by altering, amending and rescinding related laws and regulations based on the its political, economic, social and cultural features according to law. In the past 30 years, over 360 regional laws and regulations and other documents of legislative have been made. We have practised the 'Election Law', 'Marriage Law', 'Adoption Law' and etc. after alternation according to the special characteristics of Tibet, which gained sound effect and effectively safeguard the basic rights of Tibetan people." said Legqog, chairman of the Standing Committee of the TAR People's Congress.

Take the modification of "Marriage Law" in Tibet for instance. Tibet boasts its unique custom on marriage. Even though monogamy takes the leading role in most areas of Tibet, polygamy which pertained throughout history still exists in some areas. While, the marriageable age for Tibetan people has a difference with people in other regions. Therefore, TAR People's Congress stipulated the Accommodation Rules for the Implementation of the Marriage Law of the People's Republic of China in 1981 which conforms to the actual situation in Tibet.

As to the accommodation rules, Raidi, vice chairman of the National People's Congress (NPC) Standing Committee, vice chairman of the Standing Committee of TAR People's Congress introduced:" The legal marriageable age in the Marriage Law is not suitable for the actual situation in Tibet. Consequently, the marriageable ages for both genders in Accommodation Rules are two years younger than that of the Marriage Law. We also made a deep survey and advice collection for the issue of polygamy in Tibet and finally decided: the existed marriage of polygamy is still legally acceptable except initiatively require for a divorce in order to handle the special marriage relationship left over by history. But the Marriage Law must be practiced on the marriage after its issue. "

Similarly, TAR People's Congress got through the Accommodation Rules for the Implementation of the Adoption Law of the People's Republic of China in 2002, which made suitable accommodation on the rules of 'one family shall only adopt one child', "the family which can not meet the annual income requirements shall not adopt child", "required certificate of going through adoption registration" and some other issues.

"The accommodation rules made by the Standing Committee of TAR People's Congress hereinbefore according to the Constitution and the Organic Law fully demonstrate the national autonomy rights enjoyed by Tibet Autonomous Region which fully safeguard the basic interests of Tibetan people." Raidi added.

Besides the right of law accommodation, TAR People's Congress and its standing committee also made over 260 regional laws and regulations. 'Use and Development of the Tibetan Language' 'Protection of Historical Relics' and some other regulations promoted the preservation, inheritance and development of the splendid traditional Tibetan culture. Least known is the fact that formal documents in TAR People's Congress, its standing committee and local governments at different levels, regional documents of legislative, public signals are all written in Tibetan and Han languages.

Chairmen of the Standing Committee of TAR People's Congress are all Tibetans

For the standing committee of TAR People's Congress, the right of law accommodation is not the only thing has never changed in 30 years. "Chairmen of the standing committee of TAR People's Congress during different terms are all Tibetans because 93% populations in Tibet are Tibetan people." Raidi said.

In the 2007 tenure-change election for deputies in the regional-,municipal-,county-,township-level people's congresses, Tibetan deputies and those of other ethnic minorities exceeded 94 percent of the total over 34,000 deputies to the people's congresses. While, over 96 percent of Tibetan people, including herders cast their votes during local elections for people's congresses and in some regions, the turnout rate reached up to 100 percent.

Reviewing the past 30 years of the Standing Committee of TAR People's Congress, Raidi believes it has played an irreplaceable role for the People's Congress. "The establishment of the standing committee guarantees the right exercises for the People's Congress at different levels with respect to its structure and organization, which is vital for the promotion of the democracy and legal system in Tibet and has contributed greatly to the country's unity and the development of politics, economy, society, culture and etc. in Tibet."

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