200 red minibus drivers protest air conditioned buses will take their customers
Paralyze public transportation, cause traffic chaos for a day
Red minibus drivers from the Lanna Transport Cooperative
protested against the launching of the air-conditioned bus service, saying
the new service will take away their customers.
drivers climb atop their red minibuses at Thapae Gate, demanding provincial
officials stop running air-conditioned buses in Chiang Mai. The protestors
blocked roads and paralyzed public transportation from noon until late
afternoon on Friday, July 4, causing traffic chaos in Chiang Mai. The
banners, starting on the left, read: “Thais abandon Thais (Thai La Thai
not Thai Rak Thai) will repress the red mini-buses”, “A Thai proverb
says that after the farming is finished, kill the cattle (cow, buffalo or
farm animals), after the war ends, kill the soldiers”, and “This
air-conditioned bus service has brought problems to the grass-roots
The protestors displayed banners and placards, stopped
traffic at Thapae Gate, and then moved to city hall demanding cessation of
the air-conditioned bus route. The protestors blocked roads and paralyzed
public transportation from noon until late afternoon on Friday, July 4,
causing traffic chaos in Chiang Mai.
Nanti (right), Lanna Transportation Cooperatives chairman tries to
coordinate with provincial offices as angry protestors voice their concerns.
Gate was packed with hundreds of red mini-buses.
The air-conditioned bus route is operated by ACC Real
Estate, which first launched its public service on June 28. The minibus
drivers’ concern was that the bus service was competing for the same
passengers and had caused their income to drop.
One of the protestors’ banners read: “Now the local
northern people who earn their living from the mini-bus service in the local
areas and raise their family are going to die.”
The protestors demanded the air-conditioned bus service
must stop running and then castigated the Thai Rak Thai Party including
Yaowapha Wongsawas, MP for Chiang Mai and PM Thaksin Shinawatra’s younger
sister, Chiang Mai Municipality and city hall for granting the concession to
run the service.
Cooperative representatives went to city hall and met
with high-ranking provincial officials looking for ways to settle the
dispute. Autsathai Rattanadilok na Phuket, chief of Chiang Mai Provincial
Lands Transportation Office, said after the meeting that the cooperative
representatives also demanded there be no increase in the numbers of
air-conditioned buses, which at this stage number only five.
Pakorn Buranupakorn, Chiang Mai MP, said that the
protesters were bottling up Chiang Mai traffic and this could be construed
as breaking the law, because blocking the streets and causing traffic jams
in the city is illegal.
Autsathai also added that in the future, the mass transportation project
should be systemized. However, this protest would hopefully not happen
again, if there is a guaranteed income for red minibus drivers.
Buddhist Lent begins next week
Ahsalahabucha Day July 13,
Khao Pansaa July 14
All government offices, banks and many local businesses
will close for a day when Buddhist Lent, or “Khao Pansaa” begins next
Monday, July 14. Ahsalahabucha Day, an important holy day for Buddhists,
this year is being observed on Sunday, July 13.
The Buddhist Holy Day of Ahsalahabucha falls on the 15th
night (15 kham) of the full moon during the eighth month of the Buddhist
Lunar calendar, this year equating to July 13. Ahsalahabucha means paying
homage and worshiping on that day, Ahsalaha being the name of the eighth
month in the Pali language.
Ahsalahabucha Day is worshipped because of three
important events occurring on that day, called the “Triple Gem”,
commemorating the first sermon given by the Buddha, called the
“Dhammachakapavattama Sutta”, about the “Four Noble Truths”
presented to the Buddha’s first five disciples. The sermon set in motion
the “Wheel of Dhamma”, or “Dhammachaka”.
The sermon concluded that: 1. All things are a source of
suffering from the constant cycle of birth, disease, old age and death. 2.
Desire or the inability to obtain what one desires is the cause of
suffering, resulting from cause and effect. 3. Freedom from suffering can be
obtained after the complete cessation of desire. 4. The last of the Four
Noble Truths is the “Middle Way”, or the path between extremes of
asceticism and indulgence leading to the eliminating of desire. The
Eight-Fold Path consists of possessing the correct: Views, Resolve, Speech,
Conduct, Livelihood, Effort, Mindfulness, and Meditation (or Concentration).
Secondly, the day is considered to be the birth of
Buddhism. The Buddha departed the location where he obtained his
enlightenment two months earlier, and then went to a forest area in the city
of Pharansi where he showed favor to five ascetics. These five became his
Thirdly, the event of the first person to listen to the
Buddha’s sermon, and realizing the truths contained therein, is also
recognized on this day. This person became the first Buddhist monk and
created the Buddhist order “Sangha”; so this day is known as “Sangha
Day” as well as Ahsalahabucha Day.
The Thai government established the observance of
Ahsalahabucha Day in 1958, with Buddhist temples throughout the Kingdom
arranging ceremonies venerating these important historic events. Devout
Buddhists participate in the ceremonies by presenting offerings to monks and
listening to sermons and performing ritual prayers.
The entire day is revered and certain precepts are
adhered to by the more devout Buddhists, or by those who have the
inclination and opportunity to do so. The wien tian ritual ceremony is
performed in the evening - many people go to nearby temples, bringing
candles, flowers and joss sticks with them, where they walk three times
around the temple’s sacred grounds.
PARASUB: “Khao Pansaa” (July 14)
The day following the start of Buddhist Lent is another
important Buddhist holy day and begins in Thailand with the custom called
Khao Pansaa. This day falls on the first full moon (1 kham) of the Buddhist
Lunar calendar during the eighth month of every year, which this year
equates to July 14, and ends on the 15th full moon (15 kham) of the 11th
month of the Buddhist calendar, or in mid-October. During a leap year it is
identified during the “second eighth” month (the next leap year will be
The term “Khao Pansaa” can also translate to entering
the rainy season when monks return to the temple for the duration of the
rains, usually to the temple where they were ordained, where they stay for
approximately three months. The monks are not to depart the temples to stay
overnight at any other location during these months. Although the rainy
season is considered to be longer than three months, lasting up to four or
even more, monks are only required to remain at the temples for three of the
four months. During the last period of the rainy season they can then go
elsewhere when the “Katin” ceremony is performed to present robes to the
In ancient times, the act of monks going into the temples
during the rainy season was not yet a custom. Monks would continue roaming
from one domain to another, giving sermons and instructing people in the
ways of eliminating suffering and disseminating Buddhist beliefs. This was
unlike other religions of the time, as most people, including merchants and
heretics, refrained from travel due to the hazards and difficulties involved
in traveling during the rainy season.
Initially, stopping monks from traveling during the rainy
season concerned the idea that it was inappropriate for them to walk about
during the rainy season because many small living creatures were about
(which they might accidentally step on) and the rice crops were in the
ground. Therefore, it was established long ago that the monks would remain
in temples during the rains for three months, discussing and studying
Buddhist scriptures, following Buddhist disciplines, meditating and
performing ritual ceremonies.
The custom of Khao Pansaa has continued to this day with
three classes of ceremonies: a Royal Ceremony conducted by the King of
Thailand, ritual ceremonies for devout followers of Buddhism throughout the
Kingdom and ceremonies performed by monks in the temples.
The Royal Ceremony is similar to those performed by the
general public, but more elaborate. The King and members of the Royal Family
perform ritual ceremonies to pay homage to the Buddha and present Khao
Pansaa candles and traditional garments worn by Buddhist monks to the
Followers of Buddhism all over Thailand, with flowers and
candles in hand will attend temples in the morning, bringing in food,
necessities, money, traditional candles, garments and ceremonial items for
People having devout faith may refrain from the
recognized eight offences for the duration of the three month rainy season
just as monks do, while others may give up a single vice, with yet others
giving up 5-8 offences just for the day.
The ceremonies performed by monks in temples revolve
around rituals, and include accepting new monks who are taking the vows for
periods of up to three months or more. Senior monks at each monastery also
perform ceremonies to lead followers in worship and prayer.
The two main items presented to monks during Khao Pansaa
are candles and the garments worn by monks, specifically the bathing robe.
In former times, candles were essential for ceremonies, studying scriptures
and performing various other functions. Candle offerings eventually
developed into a custom that is still followed.
The presentation of garments worn by monks is said to
have originated when, in former times, people would bathe in community
areas, i.e., local streams, rivers, ponds and other sources of water, and
monks required a bathing robe. The custom of presenting garments to monks
continued to develop until it included presenting the entire arrangement
worn by monks.
Khao Pansaa, July 14, is recognized as a government
holiday. All government offices, banks and many other businesses close for
the day to recognize the importance of the Buddhist Holy Day.
Everyone is invited to participate in the temple
ceremonies and to refrain from offensive behavior for the day, and to make
the same effort thereafter.
Central Airport Plaza Chiang Mai receives Royal Opening
Story by Marion Vogt
Under the patronage of HRH Princess Ubolratana, the new
Central Airport Plaza had its official opening ceremony on Friday, the 4th
of July 2003.
Princess Ubolratana graciously sat for a photo with Central Pattana
The opening ceremony was marked by HRH Princess
Ubolratana sounding the ceremonial gong, after which Lanna traditional
dances were performed.
Kobchai Chirathivat, president and CEO of Central Pattana
Public Company Limited, said that Chiang Mai is very proud to present such a
superb shopping mall to the Chiang Mai people, a mall which is the equal to
any in Bangkok.
The Central Group dates back to 1947 when the founder,
Tiang Chirathivat, started a general merchandise store importing and
distributing quality goods from around the world. As the store prospered,
the business evolved and expanded, its expansion formed the foundations upon
which Samrit Chirathivat, Tiang’s eldest son, established the first
Central Department Store in 1957. In 1966, Samrit took over the leadership
of Central from his father, directing the company to even greater success
and growth. It was the first step in the creation of the Central Group of
Companies, and the opening of a new chapter in the retail industry of
Chirathivat (left) presents a memento to HRH Princess Ubolratana.
Central Retail Corporation is now the largest retailer in SE Asia with
department stores, specialty stores, supermarkets, mini-marts and
hypermarkets. Central Retail also operates an extensive chain of
supermarkets which will continue to expand as an integral part of the
department store and superstore chains. In addition, over the past four
decades they have broadened to encompass more than 50 subsidiaries engaged
in retailing, hotels, property, wholesaling, manufacturing, and food
franchise operations as well as developing strategic alliances with global
leaders. These companies together employ more than 14,000 people.
Lecture on mental problems to be broadcast on radio
Psychiatric big guns in attendance
“The mental problems in Thailand and the management and
treatment of mental disorders” will be the topics of special lectures to
be backed by Rotary International, said Dr Pairat Pruksachatkunakorn,
Associate Professor of Psychiatry, chairman of the organizing committee.
Jointly organized by Ruam Duai Chuai Kun, FM 100 Chiang
Mai; Sarn Sum Pun Society for Mentally Handicapped, the Rotary Club of
Chiang Mai Phuping, and supported by Eli Lilly Asia, the lectures will be
held on July 23, from 9.30 - 12 noon at the Siriphum Holiday Garden Hotel on
Huay Kaew Road, Chiang Mai.
He added that the lectures will be broadcast live via the
FM 100 station. Guest speakers include Surasee Kosolnavin (commissioner);
Monk Dr Boonchuai Surintho, Chao Duang Duan na Chiang Mai, Nipon
Suwanrungsri, the director of Suan Prung Psychiatry (Chiang Mai University)
and Dr Pairat Pruksachatkunakorn, associate professor of psychiatry.
For more information or seat reservations please call 053
227007 - 8.
400-year-old submerged temples found in Phayao Lake
Local authorities hope this means more tourism
400-year-old temple complexes were found under the waters
of Phayao Lake, and the Phayao provincial authorities are promoting the
underwater temples as another tourism attraction.
Phayao governor Somsak Boonplueng, Phayao press club,
local fishery groups, and tourism related agents in Phayao surveys on the
site after the ancient remains of the old temples were found under the
Phayao Lake surface.
As a bonus, the underwater temple areas were found to be
swarming with snakehead mullet fish and this fishing bonanza will also be
promoted as a tourist attraction.
Chiang Mai PAO looking
for ISO 9001:2000 certification
Hired specialty firm to help them achieve it
Chiang Mai Provincial Administration Organization (PAO)
is seeking ISO 9001: 2000 accreditation within this year, said Udornphan
Chantaraviroj, the president of the local PAO.
“We would like to provide services to be at the
international standard of ISO 9001: 2000 and we expect that the people will
benefit from our services,” said Udornphan.
To reach the required standard, the PAO has adopted the
service development approach. It especially focuses on staff improvement to
provide public services with more efficiency and standard quality.
PAO is using the Triple A Quality Center Company as the
consultant in providing training courses for PAO personnel to help the
organization reach the standard.
First Data IT branch launched in Chiang Mai
More IT outlets for the north
Data IT has launched its 14th branch, its first northern
branch, at Central Airport Plaza in Chiang Mai. Suntaree Kasemsan na
Ayudthaya, assistant managing director of Data IT Superstore, said at the
opening ceremony that they believe Chiang Mai Province has enough potential
to be the IT hub of this region, covering the neighboring provinces and
countries as well.
dancers performed the traditional Lanna Ging Ga La dance at the opening
The most favorite products sold by Data IT are laptops,
pocket PC’s, digital cameras and wireless equipment. It is expected this
year’s total revenue would reach 2.6 billion baht from all the branches.
Special opening specials are also on offer in Chiang Mai.
There are plans to launch another branch in Chiang Mai at Chiang Mai
Panthip Plaza on Chang Klan Road in the beginning of next year.
15 northern provinces to celebrate Northern Village Fund’s 2nd anniversary
Giving importance to Thai grassroots community development
Rajabhat Institute of Chiang Rai will organize a festival
to celebrate the Northern Village Fund’s 2nd anniversary during July 25-27
this year when 15 northern provinces come to show off their project
Assist. Prof. Dr. Manop Pasitwilaidharma, the Rajabhat
Institute rector said that they would arrange the festival to show village
fund progress in each province, following the government’s policy on the
importance of Thai grassroots community development.
The festival will be held at the Kasalong Kam Convention
Hall at Rajabhat Institute with many activities including One Tambon - One
On each day of the festival, well-known experts will
participate in the seminars. It is expected that there will be large numbers
Working organizations such as the Bank for the Poor, Eua
Arthorn Fund, Secure Housing, and others will also take part in the
exhibition to provide information for the public.
Alien workers can get their work permits this month
But only if you are Burmese, Laotian or Cambodian
Surachai T. Bunditkul
Work permit applications for foreign nationals are being
processed at the Chiang Mai Employment Service Office from now until July
Miss Orachon Rattanamanee, office director, said that the
office has been accepting registrations for alien workers from Burma, Laos
The office, in coordination with the Local Administration
Department (LAD) of the Ministry of Interior, has commenced taking
photographs for work permit cards.
Applications are being separated into two groups: one for
laborers who registered at Canteen 2, Chiang Mai City Hall, and the second
for people who registered at Fang District Office.
Miss Orachon also said that the process is only for
previously registered laborers, not for new registrants.
So, if you can read this (in English), speak and write
Thai, are Burmese, Laotian or Cambodian or know someone who is, and want
more information, contact the office at Chiang Mai City Hall or tel. 053 222
865-6 ext. 17-19 during office hours.
Metered taxis are coming
Red minibus numbers to be reduced
Nakhon Lanna Transportation Co-operatives agreed at their
annual meeting to add metered taxis to their fleet, along with the well
known and well worn red buses.
Singkham Nunti, the chairman of Nakhon Lanna
Transportation Cooperatives said the metered taxi service will be launched
in the next two months. In the first instance there would be just five taxi
cabs, though he indicated that this was just the beginning. “The metered
taxi project has been approved by the Chiang Mai Provincial Transportation
Committee. We have ordered 20 metered taxis and are installing meters and
painting them in white and red livery,” said Singkham.
Autsathai Rattanadilok na Phuket said the metered taxis
would be provided at main tourist spots around city, hotels, department
stores and tourist attractions.
To begin this project, the cooperatives would spent 10
million baht. Passengers would be charged 30 baht for the first 2
kilometers, then 4 baht per kilometer afterwards. “These metered taxis are
the same as in use in Bangkok, and there would be a contact number for
customers to ring for service,” added Autsathai.
The cooperatives would also provide a taxi van service
along with the metered taxis, which should also be running within the next
two months. It has also been agreed to decrease the numbers of red buses in
line with the increase in meter taxis and taxi vans.
Tod Pha Pa Recycle project on again
The municipality wants your rubbish
Chiang Mai Municipality is busy preparing for the second
Tod Pha Pa Recycle (recycle to make merit) project on August 10, this time
involving another four temples in municipal area.
People who want to become involved will find rubbish
drop-off points at the tents in front of the municipality and other points
as Sriphum Road, Chiang Mai-Lamphun Road, Ra Gaeng Road and Natharam, Soi 5
Road. The rubbish should be from the four categories of glass, paper, metal
and plastic, sorted and put in plastic bags.
On August 10 a parade will start at Thapae Gate at 4
p.m., and then split into four lines heading to Wat Chiang Yuen, Wat Nong Pa
Krung, Wat Phuak Taem and Wat Thart Kham.
The first project was deemed to be a success, as many
thousands of people from all municipal areas brought in 275,000 kg of
rubbish valued at approximately 500,000 baht to make merit at Wat Chedi
Seminar held to look at ways to increase OTOP market share
First step: make packaging attractive to overseas buyers
The Industrial Promotion Center Region 1 Chiang Mai,
Department of Industrial Promotion (DIP), Ministry of Industry organized a
seminar at the Empress Hotel, Chiang Mai, on products and packaging
development for supporting the local goods in the One Tambon - One Product (OTOP)
Mrs. Sumonmarn Kanlayasiri, DIP director general,
presided over the opening ceremony and was a special lecturer on the topics,
“The Development of Community Enterprise Products to the Global Market”
and “The Development Policy for Small and Medium Enterprises.”
She noted that the seminar on products and packaging
development was important for supporting the OTOP promotional campaign
because it encouraged the entrepreneurs to improve the standard of their
OTOP products and packages to reach the international standard for export.
In addition, DIP planed to establish a project for
SME’s Products Distribution and Development Center for the Northern Region
in Chiang Mai, which would be the first pilot project of its kind, aiming to
strengthen SME’s, build sustainable development, and increase the market
share of OTOP products.
After the seminar, product designers had a chance to
choose OTOP products for which they wished to design unique packaging. On
August 28, the products will be presented to the committee for evaluation
and judging, and on August 29 the winning products will be displayed to the
Mae Hong Son
establishes HIV Center
Helping HIV/AIDS sufferers in honor of Her Majesty the Queen
Mae Hong Son province has established an HIV Center for
HIV/AIDS patients, and the local Housewives Association there has instituted
a project to help HIV/AIDS sufferers in honor of Her Majesty the Queen, on
the occasion of her72nd Royal Birth Anniversary August 12.
According to Mae Hong Son Public Health Office, the
province does have a problem, and since 1989 there have been 1,765 HIV/AIDS
infected patients registered, of which 812 have since died.
This treatment center was established following Governor
Supoj Lawansiri’s assignment to the working group during the conference
held at Mae Hong Son City Hall at the end of June this year.
The 953 patients still alive have been categorized into 2
groups. There are 621 fully blown AIDS patients and 332 patients carrying
HIV but not showing symptoms at this stage.
Thailand’s second Science Park to be built in Chiang Mai
CMU has the land, the government has the budget
Surachai T. Bunditkul
Pinit Charusoombat, the minister of science, technology
and environment attended Chiang Mai University to discuss the Northern
Science Park project slated to be built in Chiang Mai. The minister met with
officials from government and private organizations to review the concept of
a second Science Park in Thailand, which has been submitted to the ministry.
The concepts of the park will put emphasis on
biotechnology, natural herbs and healthcare products. It will also stress
nano-technology and genomics to improve northern agricultural products, and
transfer technology to target industries, SMEs and cooperatives.
“Because the first Science Park in Bangkok is very
successful, the government expects great advantages for each region. For the
northern region, Chiang Mai will set up first because it has the basic
infrastructure and is suitable to be a pilot project,” said Pinit.
The project will receive a budget amounting to 5 billion
baht and Chiang Mai University will offer 1,293 rai in Mae Hia areas for
building the park.
Mafioso to be eradicated from Chiang Mai by next year
All illegal property to be confiscated
Pol. Lt. Gen. Prung Boonpadung, Provincial Police Region
5 commissioner has vowed that Chiang Mai and nearby areas will be rid of
dark influences within next year.
Police Region 5 Commissioner Pol. Lt. Gen. Prung Boonpadung said that
influential figures in and around Chiang Mai will be eradicated by next
year, and all their illegal property confiscated.
The police have already started suppression to curb the
number of weapons dealers and have issued arrest warrants for gunmen in the
southern area of Chiang Mai and upper Lamphun. There will be a strict
inspection, particularly in these areas and Chiang Dao because the people
there have indicated there is a problem.
“The suspects will be arrested and all of their
properties gained through illegal means will be confiscated. The public
properties that illegally belong to influential figures will become the
state’s properties,” said Pol. Lt. Gen. Prung.
The commissioner is convinced that there will be
additional names after the investigation of those on the current list and
suspects arrested. Police agents will be set into operation teams to
specially cope with hired gunmen problems.
Pol. Lt. Gen Prung insisted that although the police already have all the
dark influences and gang member’s names, the number of suspects is still
top secret to prevent a security leak.
More kerfuffle over the
Ban Mae Hor Phra quarry
Last month they wanted it open - this month they want it closed
Protesters from Ban Mae Hor Phra gathered at Chiang Mai
City Hall, calling for the operations of the quarry to cease and demanding
that Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra intervene.
Ruensupa (left) presents a protest letter to Chiang Mai Governor Suwat
The protest group came from many villages in Tambon Ban
Mae Hor Phra in Mae Taeng District, citing concerns for their environment.
This was a renewed local protest of people in the district over the quarry
operation project that is owned by a brother-in-law of Deputy Agriculture
Minister Newin Chidchob.
They renewed their protest against the quarry, saying no
action was taken to halt the project despite their June 22 petition to the
PM. However, there had previously been a rally at city hall to re-open Ban
Mae Hor Phra quarry on June 10, but then on July 3 the other group against
the quarrying gathered and demanded its shutdown again.
Banjob Ruensupa, the protest leader and representative of
villagers, presented a letter with the names of 2,650 people who oppose the
quarry. The letter contained five propositions regarding the quarry and
asked for Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra to decide on the quarry dispute.
They claimed that the quarry factory could damage natural resources,
environment and tourism spots in villages nearby.
Unnamed sources said the “other support group” might
have received money from businessmen, so the opposing group would like the
authorities concerned to review the names of the quarry support group.
Feelings are currently running so high that families have split because of
different ideas and different political affiliations.
Chiang Mai Governor Suwat Tantipat met with the representatives of the
protestors and assigned Wanchai Pipatsamut from the Chiang Mai Provincial
Industrial Office to investigate. However, the quarry cannot be started up
until the environmental impact study is released.
Confidence trickster bites officer during arrest
Woman allegedly made off with more than 12 million baht
A 39-year-old woman, Wanlapha Khan-archawa, a housekeeper
in Chiang Mai was arrested at the Seventeen Hotel on Sukhumvit 71 Road,
Bangkok after having been on the run for more than a month. She did not
surrender without a fight, with one policeman injured when she bit him, but
she was eventually overpowered.
Pol. Lt. Gen Prung Boonpadung, the commissioner of
Provincial Police Region 5, said that Wanlapha cheated more than 12 million
baht out of 12 victims, all owners of mobile phone shops around Chiang Mai,
by telling them that she had 1-2-call cards at a low price; however, the
victims had to first transfer the money to her before receiving the goods.
After receiving money, she bolted.
Wanlapha showed no remorse when talking to the press and
said that she was poor and needed money, and she did not know how to get any
money other than by cheating greedy people.
Police don’t believe she acted alone, so they are
continuing their investigation.
Wanlapha looks fully satiated
sitting by as the police officer shows the wound where Wanlapha bit him
during her arrest. (Photo by Nuttanee Thaveephol)
Wiang Haeng villagers oppose lignite mining project
Tilling the soil beats soiling the till
A protest against the government’s mining project took
place on July 1 with more than 20 representatives from Wiang Haeng District
meeting at the Chiang Mai city hall to oppose the lignite mine construction
Kajai hands over a letter opposing lignite mining to Kwanchai Wongnitikorn,
Chiang Mai Provincial Administration Office permanent secretary.
The Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (EGAT)
had decided to construct a lignite mine in Ban San Duang Lee, Tambon San Hai,
Wiang Haeng District, and EGAT expects that the environmental impact
assessment will be done by their EGAT units as well as with the villagers in
However, the villagers, under the banner of the Wiang
Haeng Environment Conservation Network were seriously concerned about
The leader of protestors, Boonyuen Kajai said that the
villagers believe there would certainly be negative impacts even though the
government told them they would be able to participate in every step of the
procedure. However, the government’s proposal seemed to be unrealistic
when the Wiang Haeng district chief sent them a letter prohibiting the
village headman from becoming involved.
Boonyuen said, “We would rather be satisfied with our
earnings growing by 4-5 thousand baht a month from cultivation than from any
development project which threatens the health of our children through
pollution from the lignite mine.”
The Environment Conservation Network’s statement also
claimed that the construction would destroy more than 6,000 rai of forest
The Wiang Haeng villagers want to reject both the mine construction and
the committee nominations, because the names proposed were not registered
95 teenage hoodlums wanted by police
Parents asked to look after their offspring
Pol. Lt. Gen Prung Boonpadung, the commissioner of
Provincial Police Region 5 said that there are 95 teenage hoodlums in the
area. To counteract these miscreants, Pol. Lt. Gen Prung said that there
would be a special operation team responsible for quelling the teen-age
gangsters in Chiang Mai and 24-hour watches are being instituted.
The parents of these teenagers are being advised of the
situation, hoping that this will become a way to solve the problem, and all
government officers, police, and military officers are also advised to look
after their children to ensure they are not becoming involved with
gangsters. Every governor in the 8 provinces has also received a letter
asking for their cooperation.
While the police will contact the parents of known
offenders, all parents are advised to keep a look out for delinquent
behavior by their children.
CMU academics support
the Chiang Mai Zoo project
CMU signs MOU with CMZ
Chiang Mai Zoo and the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine,
Chiang Mai University (CMU) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for
academic collaboration at the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine.
Suwichai Rojanasathien, Dean of Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Chiang Mai
University and Thanong Natheepitak, the director of Chiang Mai Zoo signed an
MOU for academic collaboration.
The MOU is to improve the quality of life and living
conditions of the wildlife in Chiang Mai Zoo, and to improve wildlife
genetics, and was signed by Chiang Mai Zoo director Thanong Natheepitak and
Assoc. Professor Dr. Suwichai Rojanasathien, Dean of Faculty of Veterinary
The dean said that both Chiang Mai Zoo and the Faculty of
Veterinary Medicine aim to work for the wildlife community and for the
education of the human society. They would support one another in terms of
knowledge, research, and medical care.
An example of this was when the Faculty of Veterinary
Medicine began providing an education course on Clinical Veterinary
Medicine, in which the students have a chance to work in a real situation,
taking care of elephants and other wild animals in Chiang Mai Zoo.
“Wildlife is a valuable natural resource. When they come to stay with
us, we should take a good care of them ... we always receive very good
support from the Faculty,” said Thanong, the director of Chiang Mai Zoo.