Locals fear navy presence alongside pilgrimage avenue in Pauktaw Twsp ought to dampen pagoda pageant attendance

Pilgrims and locals have expressed issue as the Myanmar army and police are conducting safety tests alongside the historic Sandawshin Pagoda Road in Pauktaw Township, Arakan State.Locals are involved that traffic will no longer be in a position to top have a good time the festival, which will be held for eight days from December 13-20, due to the safety checks.

“I am concerned the pagoda competition will no longer be crowded with visitors. The hawkers invested their cash for the festival,” stated U Aung Naing Htay, a neighborhood of Saw Mae Kyi village.About a hundred troopers and police arrived on Saw Mae Kyi Island on December three to restore broken stretches alongside the Sandawshin Pagoda Road, in accordance to the pagoda board of trustees.But due to the fact protection personnel are inspecting pedestrians in the area, locals and pilgrims are worried about the influence on competition attendance, in accordance to some other resident of Saw Mae Kyi village.

“I heard that the junta troopers will be deployed till the pagoda competition is finished. The pagoda pageant will no longer teem with site visitors if junta troopers are stationed [in the vicinity]. I desire the junta soldiers and police to depart as quickly as viable after the avenue is repaired,” the resident said.

“It would be higher for the junta troopers to return [to their barracks] earlier than the pagoda pageant to alleviate the concerns of the pilgrims. I heard they will return after the pagoda festival,” stated Ko Tun Tun Naing, a fellow Saw Mae Kyi villager.Officials from the Sandawshin Pagoda Board of Trustees stated they did now not be aware of when the junta’s protection personnel would withdraw from the area.

“We have organized to go to the Sandawshin Pagoda, however now we are involved about our protection due to the Myanmar military’s protection checks,” stated Ma Aye Yee, a resident of Sittwe. “There is a query of whether or not the junta troopers will come returned or not. We will no longer be in a position to go to the pagoda if the junta troopers are current there.DMG tried to contact Col. Kyaw Thura, the Arakan State minister for Security and Border Affairs, and U Hla Thein, a spokesperson for the Arakan State Administration Council, about the Myanmar navy presence alongside the Sandawshin Pagoda Road, however they should now not be reached.

The Sandawshin Pagoda pageant is celebrated for eight days, concluding on the Full Moon Day of Nadaw in the Myanmar calendar year. In addition to pilgrims from a range of components of Arakan State, Yangon, Mandalay and different components of Myanmar, the competition additionally attracts some tourists.

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