Religion: The Pung-Thim dratshang (central monastic body) yesterday submitted a petition to the prime minister through the cabinet secretary, requesting the government to consider stopping the ongoing mega-meat processing project.

Signed by four lopons of the zhung-dratshang, and stamped with an official seal of the central monastic body, the petition states that, according to the zhung dratshang, the initiative is a non-virtuous project, and was seen to be inappropriate for a Buddhist country.

The petition stated that the opening of such a non-virtuous project in a Buddhist country that has been blessed by many great bodhisattvas would be equal to converting a pure land of the Buddhas (heaven) into a butchers’ zone.

It also stated that, according to Buddhist philosophy, killing is the most non-virtuous deed.  Such acts, the monastic body believes, would subsequently result in diseases, conflicts, war and unhappiness in society.

The petition also stated that the move would upset the guardian deities and spirits of the land, and that the deities wouldn’t render appropriate protection.  Such acts, the monastic body believes, would cause natural disasters.

They also believe that starting such projects might direct people to take the wrong path from a spiritual point of view.

The petition was submitted soon after the government planned to come up with 11 mega meat projects to make the country self-sufficient in meat, and to curb the rupee outflow.

The government has acquired more than 800 acres of land at Samrang in Samdrupjongkhar to set up farms for broiler, turkey, cattle, goat nucleus and warm water fish.  Other projects include a piggery at Yusipang, and trout farm in Haa.

The government will be spending Nu 675.72M (million) for the projects, with additional funding of Nu 100M from the government of India.

By Dawa Gyelmo