Monk Sparks Mass Temple Brawl After Being Demoted

A mass brawl erupted at a Buddhist temple when a monk attacked his colleagues because he was angry at being demoted.

Devotees were praying and making offerings to the religious figures when they witnessed the shocking outburst a at Phang Yom temple in Nakhon Sri Thammarat, southern Thailand.

Footage from last Sunday (02/06) shows four monks sitting in a row about to have a meal when acting abbot Jaran Kraithong was walking out from the door, carrying a big chopping knife.

The attacker directly approached the third monk, whose name was Somboon Suthiyano, and lunged at his head. But the quick-thinking monk lifted a food carrier up to protect himself.

Attacker Jaran turned to the other monk before hitting and chopping him on the left ear. Chaotic scenes followed when the rest of the Buddhist monks fought back trying to take away the weapon.

The fifty-nine-year-old monk shouted at the onlookers before leaving the temple. His escape was foiled when he was injured in a minor car crash before he could flee.

Three injured monks were taken to the hospital. Jaran was caught by police who ordered him to be defrocked last Wednesday (05/06).

According to Chean Chunu, the chairman of Phang Yom temple, Jaran had just been removed from the acting abbot position because of his aggressive behaviours towards villagers and younger monks.

He said: “He blamed every monk in the temple for making him losing the position. He was very furious and we think this was the reason for the attack.”

Colonel Peerapong Yodsurang, deputy superintendent for investigation at Chalerm Phra Kiat district police station, said that the former monk confessed to the crime and was being questioned on suspicion of attempted murder.

The police said: “According to the CCTV around the temple, Jaran was seen walking to the nearby market and bought the chopping knife before the incident.

“He was detained and under the custody of the Nakhon Si Thammarat Provincial Court.”

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