70-Year-Old Practitioner Mr. Shi Zhimin, from Langfang, Hebei Province Details the Relentless Persecution He Has Suffered for the Past Five Years
(Clearwisdom.net) My name is Shi Zhimin, and I am 70 years old. I am retired from the Langfang Yingli Textile Company in Hebei Province ("textile company" hereafter). I used to suffer from at least seven different illnesses for many years. By 1995, my heart problems had become so serious that the doctor said that my life was in danger. I lost all hope, and began to make my funeral arrangements. Fortunately, I encountered Falun Dafa around that time. Unexpectedly, only six or seven days after having read the Falun Dafa books and practicing the exercises, I started to feel energetic and all my illnesses disappeared. I even looked like a completely different person. From then on, I became healthy in both body and mind, and my family lived a harmonious life.
Jiang Zemin's regime began to persecute Falun Dafa practitioners in 1999. On the evening of July 21, 1999, my wife, my daughter and I rode our bicycles to Beijing to report the true situation of Falun Gong to the central government. (Langfan in Hebei province is located about 40 km, or 25 miles from Beijing). The police intercepted us along the way. They took me to a dark room and asked if I planned to continue practicing Falun Gong. I told them, "Falun Gong has given me my health back. Of course, I will keep practicing it." They then punched me and kicked me. One of the policemen smashed me against one of the walls and the other officer smashed me against the other wall. They even burned my beard and my face with a cigarette lighter. Later, they sent my family and me, along with other practitioners, to a room in the police station and abused us. After we were released, people from my work unit and the police station kept on harassing us by phone calls or by frequently coming to our home. We were also summoned to the police department many times.
On the morning of September 7, 1999, I went to Tiananmen Square again. Around 10 a.m., I was arrested and sent to a local police station in Qianmen (not far from Tiananmen Square). More than 30 practitioners had already been detained in a room. Many of them were beaten, and their property was confiscated. Staff from the Hebei liaison office in Beijing later took me back to the Langfang Police Department. I explained that there was nothing wrong with practicing Falun Gong and that the persecution was wrong. Tian Changqing, a section chief of the police department, became enraged and ordered that I be detained for two weeks. They tried to force me to write a so-called "Guarantee Statement" many times in the detention center. I told them, "I used to be a dying person. After practicing Falun Gong, I have become healthier and happier. I must keep practicing Falun Gong." The person in charge said, "This policy was issued by Jiang Zemin. You have to obey it, even if it's wrong." I said, "You go ahead and do what you like. I will persist along the path that I have chosen." They then extended my term by another two weeks. As I would hardly eat anything and was so old, they released me on October 6.
After I came back home, the local authorities frequently came to visit. They threatened to dismiss me from the Party and discharge me from the textile company, thus taking away my retirement benefits, if I kept practicing Falun Gong. At the end of 1999, I was dismissed from the Party, and my ID card was confiscated. Officials from the textile company, the local authorities and people from the police station continued to come to my home and harass me. Whenever one of their so-called "sensitive dates" approached, they took me to the textile company and detained me for two weeks or even for more than a month, while several people took turns guarding me. One of the section chiefs at the police station named Li said that he would send me to a labor camp right away if I didn't obey his orders. Another chief of the police station said, "If you write a Guarantee Statement promising not to practice Falun Gong, you can ask for money, for a car, for a house, or for whatever you want. You can even appear in TV programs and become well known in the People's Daily newspaper. Otherwise, you will be discharged from public employment and lose your retirement benefits, and your children will lose their jobs."
On October 10, 2000, the police station suddenly ransacked my home. They took me to the police department, hit my face and burned my beard with cigarette lighter. They sent me to a detention center in the evening. The detention center refused to admit me because of the poor condition I was in after the police had tortured me for the whole day. So the police had no choice but to send me home. They stopped issuing my pension payments, and I haven't received a penny to cover my living expenses since then.
After I returned home, the police came to my home to check on me, every week. They stayed in my home unless they saw me staying in bed because I was not feeling well. They threatened to sentence me to 3 years of labor camp. I had no choice but to leave my home and become a fugitive since December 13, 2000. On that day, the police planned to send me to a labor camp, but failed to find me.
On the morning of December 30, 2000 and January 9, 2001, I was abducted twice by officers from the You'anmen police station in Beijing as I was distributing truth-clarification materials. They hit me on the head with a metal rod, and I lost consciousness. They poured cold water on me in the freezing winter to wake me up. In the afternoon, they sent me to a detention center. I thought to myself, "I didn't do anything wrong. I just want to tell people the truth so they won't be deceived. I should not be sent to a detention center." I ended up being released because the physical examination showed that I was in very poor health.
In mid February 2001, I was abducted again in Muxuyuan when I was distributing truth-clarification materials. In mid March, I was abducted from a train for clarifying the truth. In protest, I went on a hunger strike. The next day, I was able to escape when they took me to a train station to escort me back.
On July 26, 2001, I went back home to Langfang. I called a fellow practitioner. Without knowing that he had been arrested in the meantime, I went to his home. When I arrived at his door, six or seven policemen poured out of his apartment simultaneously from the upstairs and from the downstairs and took me with them. I struggled but they dragged me to a car. My legs and my arms were bleeding as a result of the tussle. I was so badly injured that I couldn't walk. They took me to the police station and shackled me to a chair. In the evening, two young policemen tied my four limbs to the four legs of a chair and tied my head to the back of the chair. I was wracked with pain. I said to them with great difficulty, "If anything happens to me, you are responsible!" After two hours they loosened the bonds on my head, and relaxed my handcuffs a little bit. They started to interrogate me, "Where did you get your materials? Whom did you contact? Where did they go?" I didn't answer their questions. Instead, I explained the truth about Falun Dafa to them. By the third day, they still hadn't gotten what they were after. I had not eaten or drunk anything in two days. They sentenced me to 3 years in labor camp. I refused to sign any documents. I was sent to Wanzhuang Labor Camp in Langfang. The doctor examined me and said that my health condition was too poor for me to be admitted. The police told the doctor, "He is a nationally wanted criminal. You have to admit him, even if he is dying."
Because my legs had been injured and I couldn't walk, plus I had been on a hunger strike, the police had to carry me to the labor camp. The guards and prisoners threatened to beat and torture me. I kept my eyes closed and refused to say anything. To make me eat, Chief Wang told the others, "He is an influential person. His health is so poor, leave him alone for the time being." He later told the prisoners who guarded me, "Your task is to make him eat. If he doesn't eat meals, you can't eat meals either. And I'll extend your terms." I continued the hunger strike. They agreed that I didn't have to do the slave labor, and I could walk around in the courtyard or even talk to others. So I began to eat half of a steamed bun for each meal. Unexpectedly, on August 14, when I had just started to recover, I was transferred to Handan Labor Camp in Hebei Province.
When I was in Handan Labor Camp, one day at the end of August 2001, the guards tried to force me to read an article that slandered Falun Gong. I firmly refused. I began to explain the truth about Falun Gong, but the head of the cell stopped me. Two prisoners named Liu and Zhang grabbed my hands, pushed my face towards the wall, and forced me to stand upright for a long time. They throttled me and hit me. They threatened to beat me until I was crippled. I hadn't eaten anything or drunk a drop of water for two days. They feared that I would die and stopped the beatings.
By October 30, as they were not able to "reform" me, they decided to transfer me to Gaoyang Labor Camp. Before we left for Gaoyang, the two persons who had attempted to "reform" me told me, "You didn't listen to us. You will regret it when you get to Gaoyang." One of the supervisors said, "The reform ratio in Ganyang is the highest in the country."
At the Gaoyang Labor Camp, the doctor again refused to admit me because of my poor health condition. However, the police bribed them to admit me. In the 5th brigade of the Gaoyang Labor Camp, the guards forced us to squat down in the courtyard from 5 a.m. to 10 p.m. every day and to recite the prison rules in the freezing weather. We were not allowed to stand up or sit down. We were frequently forced to stand for a long time or suffer from the cold. After two weeks of this, we still hadn't recited a single sentence of the prison rules. We said, "We are good people. We are being unjustly persecuted." The prison authorities forced us to watch TV programs and videos that slandered Falun Dafa, and tried to make us write our reflections about the slanderous programs and Guarantee Statements. I refused to write anything at first. Later I realized that it was a good opportunity to clarify the truth, so I wrote down "Falun Dafa is good", and from then on I was no longer allowed to write anything else.
It was often said that the reform ratio in Gaoyang Labor Camp was the highest nationwide. It was also said it was a civilized organization, without beatings or verbal abuse. However, we frequently witnessed beatings and scolding of individual practitioners. Once, around 2 a.m. at night in mid December, I was awakened by abusive language and the sounds of a beating. I saw a guard named Zhang beating Mr. Guo Hongqing with a big stick. I said, "Isn't it too cruel to beat him at midnight, and to not let him rest?" The next day, I was told that Mr. Guo was not only beaten and scolded for refusing to write a "Guarantee Statement," but they also took him outside into the freezing courtyard for a few hours. The guards even threatened to take off his clothes, and to brand him on the stomach with a burning hot metal plate. Whenever the guards discovered any practitioner who refused to write the required 'Guarantee Statement', they notified each other and they would scold and beat him, force him to stand upright for a long time, or expose him to the freezing cold weather.
I started another hunger strike and refused to drink even a drop of water. A few dozen prisoners came to me and said, "If you don't eat, the guards won't allow us to eat either and extend our terms. If you eat meals, we will be released sooner." During the first two days, the guards forced-fed me by inserting a tube into my nostrils. I later realized that this was also a form of persecution, so I resolutely resisted. Four or five guards held down my legs and arms. They pinched my mouth, causing me much pain and knocking one tooth loose. On December 23, after I had been on the hunger strike for 15 days, I suddenly lost consciousness. They sent me to the county hospital in Gaoyang for an intravenous drip. Several guards monitored me. I was determined not to cooperate with them. I refused both the injection and intravenous drip. They had to send me back to the labor camp.
During my hunger strike, the guards ordered prisoners to read materials that slandered Falun Dafa for four hours in the morning and in the afternoon. I recited Teacher's lectures and "Lunyu" (1) to resist the brainwashing. After I had been on hunger strike for 45 days, the labor camp leaders started to think that I was dying and released me on January 23, 2002.
My old friends came visit and cried when they saw my condition. They said that I would not survive for longer than just a few more days. However, Falun Dafa is miraculous. I kept listening to Teacher's lectures, and tried the movements of the exercises when I was lying down or sitting up. I was able to walk outside on the 8th day. The police came to my home and found out that I was getting better. They planned to send me to a brainwashing center, so once again I had to leave home and go from place to place to avoid arrest.
At the end of June 2002, I went to Meng County in Henan Province to visit my younger brother. He and his wife both practice Falun Gong. I was arrested again. The police asked for my name and address several times, but I refused to tell them. I just clarified the truth to them. They said, "The detention center is actually a local prison. If you don't disclose your information and write a Guarantee Statement, you shouldn't expect to ever be released again." They forced-fed me, but I refused to cooperate with them. They pinched my mouth, knocking some teeth loose again, and I lost another tooth. After I had been hunger striking for 15 days, they thought that I was dying. Thus, they told my relatives to take me back home. However, they detained my sister-in-law for six months for no reason.
On May 22, 2003, I was kidnapped again to the Nanzhan Police Station when I went back to my residence in Zhangjiakou. I was shackled to a chair. I managed to escape, but was caught again. At night, a police officer hit my face more than 30 times with a folded magazine. He didn't stop until he was tired. The chief of the police station said, "You are old and you are not local. Tell your family to come and take you back." I refused to tell them my personal information and started a hunger strike. I was force-fed a few days later. On the 5th day, the other practitioner who was arrested at the same time told the police his home address. His son came to take us back home in his car. When we were released, the police didn't return any of our belongings, except our old clothes. They confiscated our cellular phones, MP3 players, keys, more than 200 yuan in cash from me, and another 4,000 yuan in cash from the other practitioner. They even moved all the furniture and utensils from my residence, claiming to save them for incoming policemen.
On November 17, 2003, I went out with the same practitioner again to deliver materials to Duolun in Inner Mongolia. As soon as we arrived at a local practitioner's home, a team of policemen suddenly broke in. We clarified the truth to them. They said that they knew Falun Dafa was good, but they had to obey orders, otherwise they would be discharged and lose income for their families. So they sent the three of us (including the owner of the property) to a detention center. We went on a hunger strike. Eventually, one of the other practitioners thought we should go home and told the police his address. He also called his son to pick us up. However, policemen from Langfang police station showed up, along with a driver who drove a vehicle from the textile company. They planned to take us to a brainwashing center. We refused to go with them. They asked their superiors for instructions, and promised to take us directly back home. We thought the person from the textile company was most likely telling the truth, so we went into the vehicle. When we left, the police did not return any of our belongings to us except our keys. More than 2,000 yuan in cash was confiscated. We sent forth righteous thoughts all the way. When the car arrived Xinkailu Police Station in Langfang, even the young policemen all felt very tired after traveling thousands of miles in the snow. Since we had been on a hunger strike for 8 days and we were both elderly, they decided to take us home. Actually, it was Teacher who was protecting us. After we returned home, I was told that the Duolun police in Inner Mongolia had extorted 500-600 yuan per person, and the driver from the textile company paid the money for us.
On February 2, 2004, policemen from a local police station in Yuanyang County, Henan Province, where my younger sister lived, came to search my home. They turned the whole place upside down. They illegally confiscated more than 2,000 yuan in cash, two certificates of deposit, some irrelevant audiotapes and a computer that belonged to my son who does not practice Falun Gong. My home is more than 500 km (or 300 miles) away from my younger sister Shi Xiuyin. We don't live in the same province, and we seldom contact each other. I wondered why they came to search my home. On February 17, I learned from a report on the Internet that Zhu Xiu, the director of the People's Congress in Yuanyang County, suspected my brother-in-law (who doesn't practice Falun Gong) of having "lost" a certain document that ordered the persecution of Falun Gong. The contents of this document had been made public. As a consequence, they arrested my sister and five other relatives who don't even practice Falun Gong, and searched the homes of a professional driver and his sister [because these two people were also suspected to be involved in this incident]. They suspected that I was involved in this whole affair, so they issued a warrant for my arrest. To this day, they are still searching for me.
I am a 70-year old man and used to be a veteran Party member. My co-workers, colleagues, and neighbors know that I am a good person. However, simply because I persist in my beliefs and want to be a better person by following the principles of "Truthfulness, Compassion, and Tolerance", I was imprisoned and beaten many times. I was even sentenced to imprisonment in labor camps, dismissed from the Party and from public employment. My pension was taken away and I have not received a penny for my living expenses for more than three years. My wife's pension was also partially cut. I still have a home, but I can't go back to it because I would be arrested. I have been forced to travel around like a homeless man for years. The police have come to my home many times to arrest me in 2004. I ask all kind-hearted people to please tell me, where has justice gone? Is this really the "best period for human rights (in China) wherein the nation is governed by law" as Jiang's group is claiming?
Persons at the Langfang Yingli Textile Company in Hebei Province who have participated in the unjust treatment of Falun Gong practitioners:
Liu Baochun: 0316-2016048, 2013534;
Yang Hongru: 0316-2013534;
(Country code: 86)
(1) "Lunyu" is the preface to Zhuan Falun. The book, Zhuan Falun, comprises the principal teachings of Falun Dafa.