Dhammakaya’s digital TV channel ordered shutdown for 15 days

The National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) yesterday ordered the digital television channel of Wat Dhammakaya, DMC, to stop operation on a temporary basis with reason that it was used as a tool to mobilise followers to the temple to shield the controversial former abbot, Phra Dhammachayo.

The decision of the national broadcasting regulator came after the Department of Special Investigation (DSI) complained with it that DMC channel, it's only mouthpiece, continued to invite followers to the temple to perform religious practises.

However the DSI saw this was intended to protect Phra Dhammachayo and to intercept his arrest.

The DSI said the broadcast by DMC was tantamount to violate Section 64 of the interim constitution and defied Order 97 of the National Council for Peace and Order.

At the meeting to consider the DSI's request to black out the TV channel, the NBTC board agreed that DMC's contents were provocative and inappropriate.

It then decided to notify the temple to shut down its TV channel on a temporary basis for 15 days.

However the national regulator did not specify the exact dates to begin the enforcement of the 15-day closure, but just said it will be stopped for 15 days.

But DMC continued on air today as usual.

Source: Thai Public Broadcasting Service (Thai PBS)