A Southern Bhutanese farmer

(from Bhutan: A Shangri-La without Human Rights, various Bhutanese organisations in exile, 2000)

On the fifth day, the soldiers came to the prison cell and began intimidating me to write the application. Exhausted, I was unable to bear any more torture and I wrote down the application. Soon after that I was released.

After seven days a group of police came to my house to summon me to the district office. There they had the Voluntary Migration Form filled and forced me to sign the document, the content of which I did not understand. Out of sheer fear I signed it.

They gave me a very small amount of money. While receiving the money, I was asked to smile and say that I was leaving the country of my own free will, facing a video camera. When I refused, the policemen beat me hard on my back. Out of extreme fear, I complied with the order, while the officials watched the scene mockingly. I was ordered to leave the country within five days.