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Phuket alcohol ban for Buddhist holiday, Gazette office closed

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PHUKET: The Phuket Gazette would like to inform our readers and advertisers that our office in Koh Kaew is closed today in observance of Asarnha Bucha Day (story here).

Asarnha Bucha Day, the full-moon day of the eighth lunar month, commemorates the Lord Buddha’s first sermon to his first five disciples after attaining Enlightenment more than 2,500 years ago. Evening candlelit processions will be held in all Thai Buddhist temples.

Khao Pansa, the start of Buddhist Lent tomorrow, marks the beginning of the annual three-month “rains retreat” during which Buddhist monks customarily stay at a particular temple to study and meditate. The monks are not allowed to stay overnight at any other location during this period except under exceptional circumstances.

To mark the Buddhist holidays, a ban on the retail sale of alcohol is in effect islandwide today and tomorrow, ending at midnight tomorrow night.

The only exceptions under the Act apply to sales in hotels, in accordance with regulations. The exception was put in place to “stimulate the tourism sector”, according to the ministerial announcement introducing it (see law here).

News tips can be emailed to news@phuketgazette.net or brought to our attention by calling our news hotline: 081-970 8381.

Our office will be open again tomorrow.

The Gazette wishes everyone a Happy Asarnha Bucha Day and Khao Pansa.

 

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