Dorje Tsegyal Lungshar

Tibetan Official

Lungshar Dorje Tsegyal born in 1880, was the son of a Major or Rupon in the Tibetan Army. He was plucked from obscurity in 1912 when, as a lowly 6th rank in the Accountant-General's Office at Lhasa, he was chosen by the Thirteenth Dalai Lama to take four Tibetan students to England for schooling in February 1913 and was promoted to the 4th rank before leaving Tibet for England. As chaperone to the boys he first visited various British Indian officials in India, before travelling to England. Almost immediately be began to cause diplomatic problems for the British, organising clandestine meetings and expressing a strong desire to visit other European countries and the US (he did visited France, Germany, Holland and Belgium). The British were keen for him to return to Tibet, but not before he and the four boys were received by King George V and Queen Mary in 28 June, 1913, when he presented letters and presents from the Dalai Lama to Their Majesties. He left for Tibet on the 13 September, 1914. Written by Emma Martin

On his return he was promoted to the position of Tsepon (Financial Secretary) and spent some months working in Shigatse in 1919 on the financial arrangements between Lhasa and Tashi Lhunpo. In addition to his Tsepon posting, he was appointed as Commander-in-Chief of the Tibetan army in 1925, succeeding (and at the expense of) Tsarong Shape, although he lost this post in 1931.

In his rise to power he had made as many influential enemies as he had friends, and although he developed strong support in the army and monastic centres due to pay rises and large gifts, the land grabs he made on aristocratic estates had made him unpopular with some influential lay officials.

Following the death of the Thirteenth Dalai Lama and the sidelining and occasion smearing of his main rivals, Lungshar brought together a group of like-minded and discontented officials in a bid to overthrow the Kashag (Governing Council). He was betrayed by a member of his own group and in 1934 he was arrested on the charge of conspiring to overturn the existing Government and to seize power for himself.

He was found guilty and blinded and imprisoned in the Potala. He died in 1938.
  • Gender
  • Relationship
    gifted by
  • Nationality
  • Born
  • Place of birth
    Asia: Central Asia: Tibet [China]
  • Died
  • Place of death
    Asia: Central Asia: Tibet [China]: Lhasa
  • Cause of death
    Unknown or unrecorded
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