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PHUKET: Two huts which belong to monks and are believed to be on Royal Forest Land were investigated by Phuket authorities yesterday (July 26). While one of the monks is to be investigated by the Phuket branch of the National Office of Buddhism.
A team of officials, led by Vice Governor Somkiet Sangkhaosuthirak, went to inspect the huts on Mai Sibsong Mountain in Chalong after they received a complaint from local residents stating that there were monks putting up illegally buildings and living on Royal Forest Land.
“We have to be strict. It is Royal Forest Land so nobody should be allowed to build accommodation here. If we let it continue there will be more and more people repeating this,” said V/Gov Somkiet.
“This land is on one of the highest hills on the island and has some of the cleanest and purest water. Therefore, if people live on this land it is likely that the water will become contaminate. Many people drink this water,” he added.
At the area in question the team of officials found the two monks, Phra Somchai and Phra Pramoon together with a nun. Phra Somchai held a monk̕s certificate but Phra Pramool said he had lost his.
Meanwhile, at the rear of one of the huts two matresses belonging to Phra Pramool and the nun were found lying side by side. The monk’s precepts do not allow him to even lie down in the same sleeping quarters as a woman.
“The Royal Forestry Office will have to come here and remove huts within a month. The monks can move to live in any temple that has the same sect,” said V/Gov Somkiet.
“The Office of Buddhism will also have to investigate the monks validity,” he added.
The nun has only been temporarily ordained and is to return home very soon