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Buddhist ceremony commemorates deceased passengers

The Thaiger & The Nation

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Buddhist ceremony commemorates deceased passengers | The Thaiger
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A Buddhist ceremony has been held to commemorate the passengers who died in last Thursday’s tour-boat tragedy to the south-west of Phuket, while the search resumed for one person who remained missing.

The ceremony took place at the Ao Chalong pier early yesterday morning (Wednesday) to boost the morale of grieving relatives who were present, along with locals and Chinese authorities. The navy has deployed divers to the location where the Phoenix capsized on July 4 off Koh He to retrieve a body trapped under the shipwreck. Officials were also conducting patrols to search for the final missing person.

Phuket Governor Noraphat Plodthong said the death toll was at 45 and 43 bodies had been identified. Forty-two people survived the sinking of the tour boat. Most passengers on the Phoenix were Chinese.

Funerals were being organised at local Buddhist temples on the instructions of relatives, the governor said. According to Phuket’s public-relations office, at the time of sinking the 103 Phoenix passengers numbered 14 crew members and 89 tourists, most of them Chinese.

The captain and all crew members survived.

At a media briefing yesterday morning, Norraphat said: “We have found 42 survivors, and 45 bodies have been recovered. One body is still stuck inside the Phoenix and unable to be recovered at this stage. So just one passenger remains missing.”

The search area has been widened to include Phang Nga, Krabi, Phi Phi Island and Satun province. Meanwhile, the Tourist Police Bureau has revealed that the Phoenix was not “fit for purpose” for operations in the seas off Phuket. As well, the buoyancy aids that were provided to passengers failed to meet the minimum standards required for safety vests.

Buddhist ceremony commemorates deceased passengers | News by The ThaigerBuddhist ceremony commemorates deceased passengers | News by The Thaiger

SOURCE: The Nation

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Business

Air Asia seeks to mitigate economic losses with launch of “super app”

Maya Taylor

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Air Asia seeks to mitigate economic losses with launch of “super app” | The Thaiger
PHOTO: www.lowyat.net

Air Asia is introducing a super app, in an attempt to off-set – at least partially – the significant financial losses brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic. The mobile application shuffles Air Asia’s model as a flight and accommodation provider, to a broader platform of complimentary services. The app will offer users a variety of options, including digital payment services, delivery services, and an e-commerce platform. Chief Executive Tony Fernandes says the idea for the app was floated prior to the pandemic, but Covid-19 hastened its development.

“This journey didn’t start during the pandemic, this journey started 2 years ago, but it was accelerated because of the outbreak. This is not a Plan B, this was always our Plan A, but we still think aviation will definitely come back.”

Air Asia was hit with losses of US$238 million in the second quarter of 2020 and says it desperately needs to seek new sources of revenue while the economic effects of Covid-19 continue to be felt around the globe. The Bangkok Post reports that from October 8, users in Thailand and the wider ASEAN region can access the new app through the company’s website or through its existing mobile app.

Fernandes says payment and logistics services will be provided by the airline’s subsidiary operation, Air Asia Digital. Users will be able to book flights (including those of other airlines) and hotels, as well as enroling in a rewards programme.

“Air Asia’s roots are from moving people from A to B and moving cargo from A to B, and that is the basis of Air Asia Digital and the basis for our platform AirAsia.com.”

The app is expected to face tough competition from super apps Grab and Gojek, currently understood to be in merger talks. Should a merger go ahead, the combined operation would create a monopoly on food delivery and car-hailing services in the ASEAN region. However, Fernandes remains optimistic, with the airline hoping to complement existing services.

“I don’t believe we are here to compete, but here to complement. Airlines always see us as competitors, but we complemented the full service and created a new market that was not there. Before, only a few people could fly, now everyone can fly, and in the same way we will complement the market.”

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Crime

Chiang Mai man charged with murdering baby daughter because he wanted a son

Maya Taylor

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Chiang Mai man charged with murdering baby daughter because he wanted a son | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Thairath

A man has been arrested in Chiang Mai after confessing to poisoning his 7 month old daughter. 45 year old Anuphap Jaipanya, a hilltribe member, says he was influenced by his cultural beliefs and, having 2 daughters already, had hoped for a son to carry on the family name and take over his business.

The Pattaya News reports that the girl’s mother, 29 year old Malee Sinprai, originally reported the child missing to Chiang Mai police. She had been led to believe that her husband was taking the girl to visit relatives but became concerned when she could not reach them. Later that evening, Anuphap came home and confessed to the murder, presenting himself to police the following day.

In his confession, Anuphap told police he didn’t want another daughter and is experiencing financial trouble due to the Covid-19 situation. He has admitted to poisoning his daughter by force-feeding her an entire bottle of bathroom cleaner. He then buried her body at a Chinese cemetery in Chiang Mai’s Doi Saket district.

He is now in custody and has been charged with premeditated murder and concealing a corpse. His daughter’s body is being sent to Maharaj Nakorn Chiang Mai Hospital to allow the family to hold a religious ceremony.

SOURCE: The Pattaya News

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Thailand

Charter vote delayed, committee formed and Senators escape Parliament by boat – VIDEO

The Thaiger

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Charter vote delayed, committee formed and Senators escape Parliament by boat – VIDEO | The Thaiger
PHOTOS: Protesters gather outside the Thai parliament - Tanaporn Choopanya

Thailand’s MPs and Senators have kicked the constitutional can down the road at least a month after the parliament failed to agree on charter amendments. A panel will be sent up to examine 6 motions that were proposed and debated over the past 2 days. Meanwhile, up to 2,000 protesters were gathered outside the unfinished parliamentary buildings as an act of solidarity for the MPs supporting the changes to the current Thai Constitution.

The reality of the vote, and the setting up of an investigative committee, could push any votes on real reform well into 2021.

The 2 Houses of Parliament voted 431-255 to delay the vote. Opposition Pheu Thai and Move Forward MPs stormed out and missed the opportunity of nominating anyone to the new 45 member parliamentary committee to examine the motions, whilst the remaining members chose members for the committee. Move Forward Party’s, Pita Limjaroenrat, described the vote as “a way to stall for time” complaining that the decision “was moving the country towards a dead end”.

It was not known how the NCPO hand-picked Senators would vote on the bills. Many were thought to side with the idea of constitutional reform but the reality was that, in most scenarios, they’d be voting themselves out of a job if any reforms went ahead. Thailand’s entire upper house is a military-appointed rump of conservative former businesspeople and Army officials, mostly men.

Charter vote delayed, committee formed and Senators escape Parliament by boat - VIDEO | News by The Thaiger

The protesters viewed the afternoon’s proceedings as a blunt stalling tactic to keep the current parliament, and its unelected senators, in power. The session ran until 8.30 last night. Rather than face the angry mob of anti-government protesters at the front of the building, most of the senators escaped on boat at the rear of the building, which backs onto Bangkok’s Chao Phraya River.

The demonstrators, with a consistent theme of reform over 3 months of rallies, are demanding changes to the current constitution because it was drafted by the NCPO who kicked out the elected government of Yingluck Shinawatra in 2014.

The protesters specifically point to the NCPO-appointed senate and the power they wield to elect the country’s prime minister, even though none of them were elected (nor was Prayut Chan-o-cha).

Protesters say they will now organise the next lot of rallies in October. Meanwhile, the Parliament is now is recess.

PROTESTSLive scenes from today’s protest rally to lend their voices, albeit from outside the The Parliament, to the debates inside about amendments to the Thai Constitution. The Thai parliament buildings are unfinished and, so it seems, are the student and anti-government protesters.

Posted by The Thaiger on Thursday, September 24, 2020

 

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