Residents Protest 'Land Incursion' By Famous Monastery

(22 May) Kanchanaburi provincial officials are trying to meditate a negotiation between a famous Buddhist monastery and group of locals who claim the monastery is blocking the public road into their community.

The monastery belongs to Luang Ta Mahabuayannasumpunno (known commonly as Luang Ta Mahabua), an influential monk. Locals of Saiyoke district accused the monastery of blocking the asphalt road in front of their community since October 2012 by building a large steel gate with strap locks.

Today, Mr. Paisarn Pinwon, 55, the leader of the residents, filed complaints to Mr. Chaiwat Limwunta, Kanchanaburi provincial governor, asking him to solve the matter. He said the locals? transportation had been limited by the monastery. He also threatened a court action.

Officials in Kanchanaburi said they are trying to set up negotiation between the two sides so the case would not have to reach the court. Mr.Somchat Suwannachakra, headman of Saiyoke district, has been advised to assist in the mediation of the locals and to report back to the district office within 15 days.