A temple in Zhejiang was destroyed, and the believers were driven out in a CCP backed action.
In November 2016, the local secretary of Duqiao Party Committee, Chen Jinguo, assembled a 700 strong force to break down a cave temple. The contingent included personnel from local government, city public security bureau, armed police as well as several other departments.
Their armory included three squad cars, four ambulances, five armed policemen, three police dogs, and others carried electric batons, iron rods, shields and other types of weapons.
500 of personnel and officers formed a cordon at the bottom of the mountain where the cave temple is located. A 1000-meter perimeter around the base of the Songshan Mountain was sealed off so no one could approach it. When some villagers tried taking photos, the police took them away in squad cars.
The Xialinzhou Cave Temple is located in a village named after it in the Duqiao town of Zhejiang. The temple is more than 200 years old and is a favorite place for Buddhists to congregate. In March that year, villagers had spent about 700,000 RMB or over 100,000 USD to renovate it. However, just as the work was almost over, the local authorities declared that “the temple was dilapidated and its renovation is, therefore, a violation of construction regulations.”
They ordered for the temple to be demolished and tried to drive out the Buddhists. But when believers continued to congregate there to worship and burn incense sticks, the authorities decided to come down heavy.
That morning in November, approximately 300 officers wearing hats and surgical masks went up the mountain to drive out the believers. One officer pulled a 78-year-old woman, Ms. Dong, with so much force that she fell and her arms were struck and fractured as well.
Four other officers grabbed onto the arms and legs of a 70-year-old Buddhist, Mr. Zhou, and tried to carry him outside. When he resisted, they threw him on the ground. Because of this, his head hit the floor, and he became unconscious as well. His wife too was pushed by the police, causing a split in her vertebra.
Three more elderly believers were severely injured during this forced demolition by the CCP authorities. All six of them were transferred to a hospital. Some were able to recuperate within a couple of weeks, but some stayed in for as long as four months.
However, once the believers were removed, the authorities sent in approximately 300 personnel to finish the work of demolition. The temple’s 16 concrete pillars were broken down using electric breakers and gunpowder.
Reported by Lin Yijiang