Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Christians forced to donate for Buddhist pagoda festival in Putao

(KNG) - Burmese government employees in Putao district in northern Kachin State had to contend with a forcible cut in their January salaries as contribution for a local Buddhist pagoda festival. The cut was enforced by the Putao district military authorities two weeks ago, said local people.

Local government personnel said the junta’s District and Township Peace and Development Councils (Kha Ya Ka and Ma Ya Ka) forcibly cut between 700 Kyat to 1,000 Kyat (about US $1) from the January salaries of about 400 personnel in Putao and Machyangbaw townships in the district for the Kong Muq Lung Buddhist Pagoda Festival held from February 7 to 10.

Most government employees in the two townships are Christians but they dared not refuse to donate from their salaries for the Buddhist religious festival which has nothing to do with Christian practices, sources said.

Besides, the junta’s military strategic command commander of Putao summoned a meeting of middle-class civilians (who have less money than others) from Christian communities and collected funds for the Kong Muq Lung Buddhist Pagoda Festival, according to Christian sources in the district.

A local Christian who donated for the Buddhist festival said, “We do donate for any social cause. But we cannot donate to other religious functions. It is because of the junta’s order we were forced to donate for the Pagoda Festival.”

On the night of the last day of the pagoda festival while the stage show was being held, the temporary bamboo-bridge on Mali River which joins Kong Muq Lung village where the pagoda is situated on the east of the river bank and Htawa Dam village on the west of the river bank, collapsed due to overcrowding but the number of causalities are yet to be reported, added local people.

The festival of Kong Muq Lung pagoda is held every year and the junta’s Northern Military Command (Ma Pa Kha) commander Maj-Gen Soe Win also joined the festival, said locals.

Recent Posts from Burma Wants Freedom and Democracy

Recent posts from WHO is WHO in Burma


The Nuke Light of Myanmar Fan Box
The Nuke Light of Myanmar on Facebook
Promote your Page too