Disinformation regarding eligibility to vote for the 2021 Tibetan General Election based on Green Book payment status.

Claim :

The viral notice claims that Tibetans who have only updated/paid their Green Book payments up to 31st March 2021 would be prohibited from casting their votes for the upcoming Tibetan General Election on 11th April 2021.

Rating :

Origin : 

As the final Tibetan General Election is nearing, there is a disinformation circulating on social media platforms such as WhatsApp and Facebook. 

Fig 1. Viral notice circulated through social media

The viral notice says “Please take notice: Tibetan individuals need to be careful about their Green Book payment expiration as many people have only paid their Green Book due which will expire on 31st March, 2021. In case if you fail to make the payment of your Green Book immediately, you would be naturally prohibited from casting your votes for the upcoming Tibetan General Election on 11th, April 2021.”

What is the truth?

As the Tibetan General Election is just a few days away, this fake viral notice caused panic among many Tibetans which also led to a long queue of people waiting outside the office of the Regional Committee of Tibetan Freedom Movement in Dharamsala, to update their payment for the year 2021. In reality the requirements to vote for the final Tibetan General Election based on Green Book status is the same as the requirements for the preliminary Tibetan General Election. This clearly means that there isn’t any issue regarding voting rights for the final election based on the Green Book payment status of Tibetans in case they have paid their Green Book payment dues till 31st March, 2020 and have already registered to vote which would be the case for everyone who has already voted in the preliminary elections.

Fact Check :

The above viral information shared through social media is confirmed as fake news through various official sources and news media. These are as follows :

Source 1:

  • As per the guidelines issued by The Tibetan Election Commission, it was clearly written in the 6th point (mentioned below) that it is mandatory to get your Green Book payment updated till 31st March of 2020. Note that it is 2020 and not 2021. There is no need of updating your Green Book payment for the year 2021 to be eligible to vote for the upcoming Tibetan General Election.

Fig 2. The 6th point of the guidelines regarding 2021 Tibetan General Election issued by Tibetan Election Commission

Source 2:

  • In the wake of this disinformation and many people were seen standing in queues to update their Green Book payment for year 2021, outside the office of the Regional Committee of Tibetan Freedom Movement, Dharamsala. Consequently, a clarification letter (mentioned below) was issued from the same office mentioning that the viral notice is fake and Tibetans do not need to update their Green Book for the year 2021 to be eligible to vote for the upcoming Tibetan General Election.

Fig 3. The Regional Committee of Tibetan Freedom Movement, Dharamshala, clarified that the viral notice is fake.

Source 3 :

In the fight against such an issue of disinformation, Tibetan media organization the Voice of America Tibetan ( VOA Tibetan ) posted a video regarding this disinformation campaign by verifying from the president himself of the office of the Regional Committee of Tibetan Freedom Movement, Dharamsala.

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