Takna Jigme Zangpo
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Who is Takna Jigme Zangpo?
Takna Jigme Zangpo or Takna Jigme Sangpo is the longest-serving political prisoner of Tibetan ethnicity, having spent 37 years in a prison near Lhasa. First imprisoned in 1964, he was released from prison on a medical parole on 31 March 2002 having reached the age of 76. He resided in the Drapchi Prison.
He was first sentenced to three years of "re-education through labour" in 1964 because, as a schoolteacher, he had "corrupted the minds of children with reactionary ideas". He served a further ten-year sentence from 1970 as punishment for "political activities".
In 1983 he received a 15-year sentence and five years deprivation of civil and political rights for "spreading and inciting counter-revolutionary propaganda" after he had been seen pasting a personally written wall poster at the gates of the Jokhang temple in Lhasa on 12 July 1983. That sentence was increased by five years after he shouted "reactionary slogans" in Drapchi on 1 December 1988.
On 6 December 1991, he was reportedly beaten, held in solitary confinement for six weeks, and his sentence extended by eight years for shouting "Free Tibet" during a visit to Drapchi prison by the Swiss ambassador to China.
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