Medium restraint during veg fest – Governor

PHUKET (Gazette, Kom Chad Luek): Phuket Governor Udomsak Uswarangkura has urged mediums at this year’s Vegetarian Festival not to be too extreme during the street parades that are to take place from October 3-11. At the same time the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT), Phuket believes the festival will attract more than 50,000 tourists.

Gov Udomsak, said he ordered supervising officials not to let the mediums’ supernatural displays get out of hand and not to indulge in acts that might scare the public or harm the traditional element of Phuket’s most famous festival.

“I have also asked all 14 [participating] shrines and the food vendors to ensure that there is proper food hygiene and as a follow up the Phuket Provincial Health Office will be inspecting food stalls,” he added.

Meanwhile, Suwalai Pinpradab, Director of the TAT Phuket office, said that the Vegetarian Festival this year will be more special than previous ones because of the presence of the Mazhofu, or “Ruby God”, a statue of which was recently flown in from Fujian Province, China.

“We expect more than 50,000 tourists from Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Hong Kong and China and estimate an income of more than 20 million baht. Many hotel rooms have been booked for the duration of the festival,” K. Suwalai added.

Prasert Fukthongphol, Chairman of Phuket Shrines, said all 14 participating shrines are set to cooperate fully with provincial authorities.

“The thing that worries me the most are the firecrackers thrown at the mediums as they pass during the parades around the city center. It’s dangerous for the mediums and dangerous for people watching,” he added.

“I would like to ask people to please only use normal red fire crackers as in the past some mediums have been injured and have had to seek hospital treatment.”

Phuket News
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