RANGOON — Police and Burma’s state-backed monastic council sealed off a Buddhist monastery in Rangoon’s Tamwe Township at about midnight on Tuesday, evicting monks who reside at the site.
The ownership of the Maha Thanti Thukha monastery has been in dispute since earlier this year, with both the abbot, U Pyinya Wuntha—also known as Penang Sayadaw—and the council, the State Sangha Maha Naya, both claiming to be the rightful owner. The monastery was reportedly donated to the abbot by Burma’s former military junta.
From about 9 pm Tuesday, about 300 police besieged the monastery and monks from the council read an eviction order to the monks inside, said acting abbot U Ottara, adding that property was also confiscated from the site.
U Pyinya Wuntha is currently on visiting Japan, but the Sangha ordered the monastery sealed off purportedly so that the dispute to be solved in accordance with the law, U Ottara told The Irrawaddy.
The monastery’s monks, whose number is not known, were taken away on buses to Kaba Aye Pagoda.