Muslim shopkeeper expelled violently by a Ma Ba Tha monk for doing business in religious site

19th April,2016
Reported by Aung Thura


It is reported that a Ma Ba Tha monk attacked a roadside shop, owned by a Muslim, located in the vicinity of Burma’s famous Shwedagon Pagoda. Facebook pages apparently controlled by ultra nationalists were overjoyed with their own posting of this incident on the first day of Burmese new year, previous Sunday. According to their post, the victim was a 25 year old, Abdul Qadir@Ye Ko Ko from Yangon and was even beaten, kicked and punched after he had been escorted to the nearest monastery.

As a street vendor, the victim opened his shop in the pagoda’s vicinity where many people turn up especially on religiously celebrated calendar days. Later on, he was expelled by a mob led by a Ma Ba Tha monk who then claimed Muslims are not allowed to do business at any Buddhist temples. Nearby Buddhist couple tried to alleviate the situation and requested the monk not to violently aggravate.

The victim’s money and belongings were also seized. This latest incident is a third of its kind in recent weeks.

Every citizens are constitutionally free to do business at any place but ultra-nationalist groups have been creating ‘Muslim free Zone’ across the country and calling the citizens to boycott Muslim businesses. Expelling Muslim shops at the vicinity of Buddhist religious locations have become very common in recent years.

While ex-government was not interested to take proper action against these discriminatory acts which may undermine peace and stability in the country, Ma Ba Tha actions have become daring alarmingly to attract the new government’s attention albeit some source said police hesitation to take action against Ma Ba Tha.

Many Buddhist people condemned this Sunday incident, some even personally questioned at the township police station, by highlighting that this sort of discrimination goes against the teaching of Buddhism.

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