Bill to Patronise and Protect Buddhism
29 Mar 2016
Pressured by Buddhist groups to enshrine Buddhism as a national religion, the constitution drafters have met the demands halfway by providing mechanisms in the new draft constitution to protect Buddhism. On Tuesday afternoon, 29 March 2016, the junta-appointed Constitution Drafting Committee (CDC) headed by Meechai Ruchuphan unveiled the finalised draft constitution. The fate of the draft will be decided by public referendum in August.
6 Nov 2015
Thai academics have claimed that a campaign to make Buddhism the state religion of Thailand goes against human rights principles. On Wednesday and Thursday, 4-5 November 2015, Thaivoice Media posted on YouTube a video interview of Surapot Thaweesak, a well known religious scholar.
12 Oct 2015
Thailand’s Ministry of Culture has banned a horror film centring on the life of a teenage monk after the movie caused a stir among Buddhist hardliners who alleged that the film insults Buddhism. On Monday, 12 October 2015, Sahamongkol Film International, a Thai film production company, sent out a tweet to inform the public that it has to postpone screening the film ‘Abat’ (‘offense’ in the Pali language, the sacred language of Theravada Buddhism).
10 Mar 2015
The junta cabinet has approved a bill on religion which can be used to prosecute, with jail terms, people who propagate ‘incorrect’ versions of Buddhist doctrines or cause harm to Buddhism. The bill also posts jail terms specifically for homosexual monks.