THE WORLD CIVILIZATIONS AND INDIA , PART-71

INDONESIA ( SERIES -4 )

THE AGE OF ISLAMIC STATES IN INDONESIA

During the MAJAPAHIT regime itself MUSLIM traders had started coming to INDONESIA . And with this the process of proselytizing the local inhabitants began . When it reached at peak in the 14th century, MAJAPAHIT power began to decline ranging from 1478 AD to 1520 AD . It was because of the fact that the MAJAPAHIT regime was unable to control the rising power of the SULTANATE of MALACCA . A large number of people , priests , artisans , courtiers and many members of the royal family moved east to the Island of BALI at the end of the MAJAPAHIT regime . As per the accounts of the ABBASID CALIPHATE ( THE THIRD CALIPHATE TO SUCCEED THE ISLAMIC PROPHET MUHAMMAD , RULED FROM BAGHDAD ) , many MUSLIM sailors traveled to the INDONESIAN ARCHIPELAGO due to its precious spice trade commodities like cloves , nutmeg , galangal etc. The spread of ISLAM dated back to the thirteenth century onwards in the Island of SUMATRA . However , its process was complicated and slow . The spread of ISLAM could be attributed to the increasing trade links outside the ARCHIPELAGO . In fact , trades and royalty of the major Kingdoms were the first to adopt the new religion called ISLAM . In the most of the parts of JAVA and SUMATRA , ISLAM spread by the end of 16th century . However , ISLAM in INDONESIA overlaid and mixed with the existing culture and the religious influences as such . And it shaped the predominant form of ISLAM in JAVA , INDONESIA . The HINDU majority concentrated in BALI only .

We have learnt something/little about the SULTANATE OF MATARAM in our earlier blog . Now a fresh look at this SULTANATE will give us a new light as such . Virtually , the SULTANATE OF MATARAM was the third SULTANATE in JAVA after the SULTANATE OF DEMAK BINTORO and the SULTANATE OF PAJANG . The SULTANATE OF MATARAM was the last major independent JAVANESE kingdom of JAVA before coming to DUTCH . It’s first monarch was SENOPATI who ruled from 1586 AD to 1601 AD . During the reign of SULTAN AGUNG ANYOKROKUSUMO , who ruled from 1613 AD to 1645 AD , the MATARAM SULTANATE expanded to the maximum extent . And began to decline after his death in 1645 . PAKUBUWONO II was the last ruler who ruled from 1743 AD to 1749 AD before MATARAM fell in the hands of DUTCH EAST INDIA COMPANY ( VOC ) in 1749 AD . The main sources of the history of MATARAM SULTANATE were local JAVANESE historical accounts called BABAD and the accounts of the DUTCH EAST INDIA COMPANY . Defects with the local JAVANESE BABAD were that they were generally undated , obscure , mythological and full of fantastic elements ; for they were used as tools to legitimize the authority of the Ruler.

The SULTANATE OF BANTEN was a BANTENESE ISLAMIC TRADING COMPANY founded in the 16th century in BANTEN . BANTEN is a port city on the northwest coast of JAVA . It was said to have been founded by SUNAN GUNUNGJATI who had previously founded CIREBON . Its capital was OLD BANTENESE and SERANG . And its languages were BANTENESE apart from other languages like CIREBONESE , SUNDANESE , CIKONENG LAMPUNG and BANYUMAS JAVANESE . And the main SULTANS who ruled the kingdom were as follows : 1. SULTAN MAULANA HASANUDDIN , WHO RULED FROM 1552 AD TO 157O AD ; 2. SULTAN AGENG TIRTAYASA , WHO RULED FROM 1651 AD TO 1683 AD ; 3. SULTAN MAULANA MUHAMMAD SHAFIUDDIN , WHO RULED FROM 1809 AD TO 1813 AD ; and 4. SULTAN SYARIF MUHAMMAD ASH-SHAFIUDDIN . It was once a big trading center of pepper in the South-East ASIA . The glory of the kingdom reached its zenith from late 16th century to mid-17th century . In the late 17th century , its importance was overshadowed by BATAVIA , the MALAYAN city and the capital of the DUTCH EAST INDIES . And it was finally annexed by the DUTCH EAST INDIES in 1913 . Its core area , now , forms the INDONESIAN city of BANTEN with the GREAT MOSQUE OF BANTEN , a place of attraction for the people of the country and outside of it .

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TO BE CONTINUED …………….

THE WORLD CIVILIZATIONS AND INDIA , PART-70

INDONESIA ( SERIES -3 )

MAJAPAHIT AND SINGHASARI KINGDOM

In the PRE-ISLAMIC history of INDONESIA , two important regimes are required to be studied . The HINDU MAJAPAHIT Kingdom was founded in the Eastern JAVA at the end of the 13th century . The history of MAJAPAHIT Empire was written in several records including PARARATON (IT IS A JAPANESE HISTORICAL CHRONICAL WRITTEN IN KAWI , OLD JAVANESE LANGUAGE) and NEGARAKERTAGAMA ( IT IS AN OLD JAVANESE EULOGY TO HAYAM WURUK , A JAVANESE KING OF THE MAJAPAHIT EMPIRE ) . Under the leadership of GAJAH MADA , MAJAPAHIT Empire reached the peak of prosperity and affluency . GAJAH MADA was a powerful military leader . It was considered as the Golden Period of INDONESIAN history . From 1293 AD to around 1500 AD , its influence extended to most of the MALAYA PENINSULA , SUMATRA , BALI and BORNEO as such . The founder of the MAJAPAHIT Empire , KERTARAJASA , was the son-in-law of the Ruler of SINGHASARI kingdom of JAVA . KERTARAJASA was a JAPANESE Emperor from 1293 AD to 1309 AD . When in 1290 AD , SINGHSARI drove SRIVIJAYA out of JAVA , the rising power of SINGHASARI attracted the attention of KUBLAI KHAN , the then Emperor of CHINA as he sent missionaries demanding tribute . But KERTANEGARA , the last and most important King of the SINGHASARI kingdom of JAVA from 1268 AD to 1292 AD ( till his death ) , refused to pay tribute to KUBLAI KHAN . As a result , KUBLAI KHAN sent military off the coast of JAVA in 1293 AD as a punitive expedition against SINGHASARI kingdom . By that time KERTANEGARA was killed by a rebel from KEDIRI Kingdom , a HINDU-BUDDHIST Kingdom located in the East JAVA . The MAJAPAHIT allied with the MANGOLS against JAYAKATWANG of KEDIRI Kingdom . And once the SINGHASARI kingdom was destroyed , MAJAPAHIT turned towards its allies MANGOLS and compelled them to withdraw from there as confusion percolated deep among the MANGOLS as such . So the MANGOLS preferred to retreat .

GAJAH MADA , an ambitious Regent of MAJAPAHIT from 1331 AD to 1364 AD , conquered and extended the rule to the surrounding island . According to the old JAVANESE Manuscripts , poems and mythology , GAJAH MADA was a military leader and an ambitious MAJAPAHIT Prime Minister/Regent of the JAVANESE Empire of MAJAPAHIT during the fourteenth century . He had taken an oath , called SUMPAH PALAPA , according to which he vowed to live an ascetic lifestyle by not consuming food containing spices until he had conquered all of the South-East ASIAN archipelago NUSANTARA ( THE INDONESIAN NAME OF MARITIME SOUTH-EAST ASIA ) for MAJAPAHIT . During his reign , the HINDU Epics like RAMAYANA and MAHABHARATAS became ingrained in the JAVANESE culture . And the world viewed that through WAYANG KULIT, a traditional form of puppet-shadow play originally found in the cultures of JAVA and BALI in INDONESIA . GAJAH MADA is still considered as an important national hero in modern INDONESIA . He was the real unifire of the INDONESIAN archipelago .

The word GAJAH literary means Elephant . In the HINDU mythology , it is believed to be a VAHANA ( ANIMAL MOUNT ) of the God INDRA . At the same time , the Elephant is also associated with LORD GANESHA— the elephant-headed God with a human body— the son of LORD SHIVA and GODESS PARVATI . Similarly , the word MADA ( A JAVANESE WORD ) appears to be derived from SANSKRIT which means drunk . The concept is when the Elephant is drunk , he will walk arbitrarily , violently , overcoming all obstacles coming on the way . If we apply all these meaning with GAJAH MADA , the name could be interpreted in two ways : ‘ 1. HE CONSIDERED HIMSELF TO BE THE VEHICLE OF THE KING , THE EXECUTOR OF THE KING’S ORDERS , JUST AS THE ELEPHANT AIRAVATA BECAME THE VAHANA OF THE GOD INDRA ‘ ; and 2. HE IS A PERSON WHO SEEMS DRUNK AND VIOLENT WHEN FACED WITH VARIOUS OBSTACLES THAT WILL HINDER THE PROGRESS OF THE KINDOM .’ Similarly , in the GAJAH MADA Inscription , his other nickname is RAKRYAN MAPATIH JIRNODHARA . JIRNODHARA literally means ‘ builder of something new .’ It also means ‘ restorer of something which has fallen apart .’ Thus , in a fugatative sense , he could be seen as a restorer and successor to KERTANEGARA’S idea in the DWIPANTARA MANDALA ( UNITED SOUTH-EAST ASIAN ARCHIPELAGO DEVELOPED IN 1275 ) concept . Much of the modern popular depiction of GAJAH MADA has been derived from the immigration of MOHAMMAD YAMIN who wrote a book called GAJAH MADA : PAHLAWAN PERSATUAN NUSANTARA in 1945 . MOHAMMAD YAMIN was an INDONESIAN poet , politician and national hero who played a crucial role in writing a draft preamble to the 1945 constitution of INDONESIA .

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TO BE CONTINUED ……………….

THE WORLD CIVILIZATIONS AND INDIA , PART-69

THE HINDU-BUDDHIST CIVILIZATIONS OF INDONESIA ( INDONESIA SERIES-2 )

Like most of the southeast ASIAN Countries , INDONESIA was also influenced by the INDIAN culture . Since second century AD onwards and upto twelfth century AD , the INDIAN Dynasties like PALLAVA , GUPTA , PALA and CHOLA , spread the INDIAN culture throughout South-East ASIAN countries including INDONESIA . Though references to the YAWADVIPA , a HINDU Kingdom had appeared in the SANSKRIT Literatures since 200 BC as such . As the references can be found in the ancient INDIAN Epic RAMAYANA that how SUGRIVA , RAMA’S chief of the army , sent his men to YAWADVIPA in search of SITA , the wife of RAMA . As per the TAMIL text like MANIMEKALAI , NAGAPURAM was the capital of the JAVA Kingdom . On the peak of the MOUNT RAKSA in the PANAITAN Island , a statue of LORD GANESHA has been found from the UJUNG KULON NATIONAL PARK in the west JAVA . It appears to be that of the 1st century AD . We also have Archeological evidences of SUNDA Kingdom in the west JAVA of second century AD . The JIWA temple of BATUJAYA , KARAWANG , west JAVA also appears to be of that period only . The south INDIAN culture was spread over there in JAVA by the PALLAVA Dynasty between 4th and 5th century AD . The stone Inscriptions written in the PALLAVA scripts found in JAVA and BORNEO of the 5th century AD ascertained this fact . The CHINESE traveler FA-HIEN with about 200 fishermen reached JAVA in the beginning of the 5th century and he had written in his Accounts that all the inhabitants of JAVA that time were HINDUS . All the fishermen who accompanied him from the GANGES to SIHAL ( NOW SRI LANKA ) and from SINAL to JAVA and from there to CHINA— were HINDUS . It is also said that in the 75 AD , from KALINGA ( NOW ORISSA ) a group of fishermen , through the way of BENGAL , reached JAVA and established INDIAN colonies there . They civilized the local people . They made them cultured and thus , the 75th AD was considered as the date of their coming to the Island as well as the beginning of the first year of the JAVA calander . Though the language of JAVA was MALAYA , yet SANSKRIT was the language of religious , political and historical Books and Manuscripts of JAVA as such .

A HINDU KUTAI MARTADIPURA KINGDOM

The first and the oldest HINDU Kingdom that existed in INDONESIA was the KUTAI MARTADIPURA KINGDOM in the East KALIMANTAN on the Island of BORNEO , INDONESIA . The native ethnic group called as URANG KUTAI , having population of around 300,000 people , have their own language called the KUTAINESE language which accompanied with their own rich history . KUTAI is the historical region where , at least , two Kingdoms ruled : 1. KUTAI MARTADIPURA KINGDOM FROM 399 AD TO 1635 AD , A HINDU KINGDOM ; and 2. KUTAI KARTANEGARA SULTANATE FROM 1300 ONWARD , A MUSLIM KINGDOM . The seven stone pillars or YUPA have been found in KUTAI , KAMAN Estuary , near the MAHAKAM River. The YUPA Inscriptions described about three Rulers : 1. THE FIRST RULER WAS KUDUNGGA , ‘ THE LORD OF MEN ‘ (NARENDRA) ; 2. HIS SON ASWAWARMAN , ‘ VANSA KARTR ‘, ( THE FOUNDER OF THE DYNASTY ) ; and 3. MULAVARMAN ‘LORD OF KINGS ‘ (RAJENDRA) ,THE SON OF LATTER AND THE GRANDSON OF THE FORMER . As about the origin of KUDUNGGA , the historians are not unanimous as such . Some of them are of the opinion that they presumably were the descendants from the royalties of the MAGADHA EMPIRE of INDIA . While others argue that the name is similar to BUGIS name of KUDUNGGA . However , his son and the grandson adopted the HINDUISTIC belief as such . During the reign of King MULAVARMAN , the YUPA INSCRIPTIONS were made . It is believed to be made by BRAHMINS who received alms from King MULAVARMAN . RAJA MULAVARMAN was said to have conquered his neighbors in battle . He is also stated to have increased/expanded the Lands of KUTAI by a VEDIC RITUAL called ASVAREDJWA . This ritual in INDIA was called ASVAMEDH YAGNA which was performed by the Kings in the ancient INDIA . For this ritual a horse was released for free roaming uninterrupted as long as he could . And the entire land , till where the horse roamed , was declared as the land of the King . MULAVARMAN was also known for his tribute of gold to his God . It is also not clear why the YUPA INSCRIPTIONS were made during his period , because the name of his kingdom was not mentioned on the Inscriptions nor in any other documents as such . It is also not clear why these Inscriptions were erected and with what purpose . But it is clear that the LESONG BATU , a megalith stone , located in the MUARA KAMAN district is believed to be the remnants used to make the ancient YUPA INSCRIPTIONS in the 4th century AD .

THE KUTAI KARTANEGARA SULTANATE

The KUTAI KARTANEGARA SULTANATE was established in the end of 13th century AD . It was located in the region of TEPIAN BATU which was also called KUTAI LAMA . The first known ruler of the SULTANATE was AJI BATARA AGUNG DEWA SAKTI who was supposed to have ruled from 1300 AD to 1325 AD . AJI PANGERAN SINUM PANJI MENDAPA , who ruled from 1635 AD to 1650 AD , conquered the kingdom of KUTAI MARTADIPURA and merged the two realms . Thus , the name of the new kingdom was KUTAI KARTANEGARA ING MARTADIPURA . In 1667 , the DUTCH EAST INDIA COMPANY ( VOC ) attacked MAKASSAR on the Island of SULAWESI which led to the downfall of BUGIS kingdom of GOWA . As a result , some of the BUGIS under the leadership of LAMOHANG DAENG MANGKONA immigrated to KUTAI and the Ruler of KUTAI allowed them to settle in KAMPUNG MELANTAI around the KARANG MUMUS RIVER . And this settlement grew and developed as the modern town of what is called SAMARINDA . Since 17th century , almost all BUGIS adopted ISLAM . AJI MUHAMMAD IDRIS , who ruled the region from 1732 AD to 1739 AD , was the first ruler to have an ISLAMIC name as such . AJI MUHAMMAD MUSLIHUDDIN in 1782 moved his capital from PEMARANGAN to TEPIAN PANDAN , the present day city of TENGGARONG . But in1844 AD , the DUTCH defeated the SULTAN AJI MUHAMMAD SALEHUDIN and forced him to exile after taking direct control of KUTAI . In 1942 , the JAPANESE invaded the region and acknowledged a KOOTI KINGDOM which was the subject of TENNO . In the JAPANESE language the Emperor is called TENNO . In 1945 AD , KUTAI with its neighbors joined the EAST KALIMANTAN FEDERATION and finally became the part of the REPUBLIC OF INDONESIA .

NOTE : THE SOURCES OF THE BLOG ARE TEXT BOOKS AND OTHER WRITTEN MATERIALS ON THE SUBJECT .

TO BE CONTINUED ……………….

THE WORLD CIVILIZATIONS AND INDIA , PART-68

THE HISTORY OF INDONESIA AT A GLANCE ( INDONESIA SERIES-1 )

INDONESIA is an archipelagic country having more than 18000 islands located along the equator in South-East ASIA . Historians are of the opinion that INDONESIA was linked with the ASIAN mainland during PLEISTOCENE ( ABOUT FOUR MILLION BC ) period of history . This was the period when the first HOMINIDS appeared in this archipelago . Today they are called JAVA MAN who had inhabited INDONESIA about two million to five lakhs years ago , was first discovered by the DUTCH anatomist EUGENE DUBOIS at TRINIL in 1891 . Other HOMO ERECTUS Fossiles of a similar age were found at SANGIRAN in the 1930s by the anthropologist like GUSTAV HEINRICH RALPH VON KOENIGSWALD . AUSTRONESIAN people , who constituted the majority of the modern population of INDONESIA , were supposed to have originally came from TAIWAN around 2000 BC ago . From the seventh century AD onwards , the SRIVIJAYA naval kingdom flourished , thus began the HINDU and BUDDHIST influences in INDONESIA . SRIVIJAYA was a BUDDHIST THALASSOCRATIC Empire based on the island of SUMATRA which ultimately influenced much of South-East ASIA . SRIVIJAYA was an important centre of the expansion of BUDDHISM from the 7th to 12 century AD . SRIVIJAYA was the first unified kingdom to dominate much of the INDONESIA and MALYA archipelago .

THE AGRICULTURIST SHAILENDRA DYNASTY — IN BRIEF

The SHAILENDRA DYNASTY was an INDIANISED DYNASTY that emerged in JAVA in the 8th century AD . The word SHAILENDRA was derived from two SANSKRIT words : 1. SAILA ; and 2. INDRA . SAILA means mountain and INDRA means King . Thus , etymologically speaking SHAILENDRA means ‘ KING OF THE MOUNTAIN ‘. Their reign signified a cultural renaissance in the entire region . The SHAILENDRAS were promoters of MAHAYANA BUDDHISM with inherent elements of HINDUISM . They covered the KEDU PLAIN and CENTRAL JAVA with BUDDHIST Monuments . The colossal STUPA of BOROBADUR was one of them . It has now been designated as the UNESCO WORLD HERITAGE SITE as such . Though considered as THALASSOCRATIC reign , yet they relied on the agricultural pursuits . They developed KEDU PLAIN of CENTRAL JAVA as an area of intensive rice cultivation . The Dynasty appeared to be the ruling family of both : 1. MATARAM KINGDOM of CENTRAL JAVA ; and 2. SRIVIJAYA KINGDOM of SUMATRA .

The MATARAM KINGDOM of CENTRAL JAVA flourished as a JAPANESE HINDU- BUDDHIST Kingdom between 8th to 11th century . It was established by King SANJAY. It expanded from CENTRAL JAVA to EAST JAVA . The kingdom was also ruled by the SHAILENDRA DYNASTY and the ISHANA DYNASTY . Its capitals at various times were MAMRATIPUR , POH PITU , TAMWLANG and WATUGALUH respectively . The common languages of the kingdom were OLD JAVANESE and SANSKRIT . It spread from 716 AD to 1016 AD . And religions that were followed by the people during the period were : 1. HINDUISM ; 2. BUDDHISM ; and 3. ANIMISM as such . The kingdom was seemed to have relied heavily on agriculture . Extensive rice farming was the profession of most of the people of the Kingdom . Later they were benefited by maritime trade also . The kingdom was prosperous and populated . It had a well developed culture and refined civilization as such . Between the late eighth century and the mid-9th century , the Kingdom saw rapid growth of temple construction . The most important temples constructed during the period in MATARAM were KALASAN , SEWU , BOROBADUR and PRAMBANAN . All these temples were quite closer to the modern day city of YOGYAKARTA . All these temples reflected the the blossoming of JAVANESE art and architecture . The Kingdom had become a dominant empire not only in JAVA , but also in BALI , SUMATRA , SOUTHERN THAILAND , THE INDIANISED KINGDOM OF PHILIPPINES and KHMER in CAMBODIA . Later the Dynasty was divided into two Kingdoms . The one became BUDDHIST and other SHIVAIST Dynasty . The BUDDHIST Dynasty of SRIVIJAYA Kingdom in SUMATRA was led by BALAPUTRADEWA . The SHIVAIST Dynasty of MATARAM Kingdom of JAVA was led by RAKAI PIKATAN .

NOTE : THE SOURCES OF THE BLOG ARE TEXT BOOKS AND OTHER WRITTEN MATERIALS ON THE SUBJECT .

TO BE CONTINUED ………………….

THE WORLD CIVILIZATIONS AND INDIA , PART-67

INDO-THAI CULTURAL UNITY

BRAHMINICAL CULTURE IN THAILAND The BRAHMINICAL CULTURE/RELIGION came to THAILAND at quite early stage of its history . Historians are unanimous on this that the oldest religion of SIAM was the BRAHMINICAL religion . Simultaneously , Historians are of the opinion that both – the BRAHMINICAL RELIGION and BUDDHISM came to THAILAND from CAMBODIA as that time THAILAND was the part of CAMBODIA before 13th century AD . Some inscriptions/petrograph with portraits including two portraits of LORD GANESHA have been found in BANGKOK . In one inscription description has been found how to establish SHIVA LINGA . Statues of LORD GANESHA , LORD VISHNU , GODDESS LAKSHMI and LORD SHIVA made up of bronze have been found which proves the presence of the INDIAN BRAHMINICAL CULTURE in THAILAND . In one of the statues out of four hands of LORD VISHNU in upper one hand CONCH and in other CHAKRA (WHEEL) have been found which appears to be made by some INDIAN sculptures as such . Similarly , in one of the statues , LORD SHIVA was shown doing TANDAV NRITYA which appears to be Similar to one statue of NATRAJA SHIVA found in SOUTH INDIA . In LOPURI , one very ancient temple has been found about which many historians are of the opinion that it was built on the basis of the HINDU arts and it appears to be similar to that of the HINDU temples found in the far-east of CAMBODIA . Three sleeping rooms have been found in this temple which appears to be built for sleeping purposes of LORD BRAHMA , LORD VISHNU and LORD SHIVA .* BRAHMINS in SIAM were honored like BUDDHIST MONKS in the King’s Palace and when new King was going to be crowned on the throne of SIAM , all these BRAHMIN PRIEST were invited for chanting VEDIC MANTRAS on this occasion . Near to the BATVOT-FRAM temple , there existed a village of BRAHMIN families who were locally called FRAMS . And there existed three temples of bricks in which still there exists a statue of TRIMURTI ( THREE STATUES OF — BRAHMA , VISHNU AND MAHESH ) called in THAILAND , FRAMHA RAKSHESHWAERVIDHI . Like an ancient INDIAN King , the King of THAILAND used to celebrate a festival called REKNA in his palatial garden . During this occasion , the King used to plough the field as we see in the ancient INDIA , RAJA JANAK of VIDEHA used to plough the land once In a year or so . We can also get such story in the BUDDHIST book called NITANT KATHA where the SHAKA King SUDYODHAN used to plough the field once in a year . Moreover that , in SIAM like in INDIA tonsure ceremony of children are still celebrated . INDO-SIAMESE cultural unity could , thus , be seen from this fact that in a HINDU temple of BANGKOK , the entire story of the RAMAYANA is ingraved .

BUDDHISM IN SIAM/THAILAND

As we know that before 14th century , SIAM was the part of CAMBODIA and the King of CAMBODIA was a staunch SHAIV ( WORSHIPER OF LORD SHIVA ) . In 1356 AD , a SURYAVANSHI KING RAMA freed SIAM from CAMBODIA . He called a BUDDHIST MONK called MAHASWAMI SANGHRAJ from SRI LANKA to propagate BUDDHISM in SAIM . Again in year 1358 AD he planted a branch of pious PIPAL tree brought from SRI LANKA . And later a BUDDHIST MONASTERY was built where that PIPAL tree was planted by the King . One can see what is inscribed on the SHIGH DWAR ( LION’S GATE ) of BOROBADUR temple of JAVA and VARHUT temple of INDIA are written on the BOUDH VIHARA of SIAM almost everywhere . The number of BOUDH VIHARA in SIAM is more than twenty thousand in which more than a 100,000 BUDDHIST MONKS used to stay . As per popular belief , under the pedestal of some of the BUDDHIST Statues present in those BOUDH VIHARA , there existed so many precious metals as such . MOST OF THE BUDDHIST MONKS are from HINYANA SECT and they used to wear saffron color cloths like the INDIAN BUDDHIST MONKS . Their heads are tonsured . BUDDHIST MONKS never do marriage . They are free from worldly lures/temptations . They use to beg every morning for their livelihood . They never take narcotics substance or liquor . And the THAI Government provides government helps to every BUDDHIST MONASTERY OF THAILAND as the Ruler of SIAM is considered as the First and the Supreme head of BOUDH RELIGION . He is protector of the religion . The King never interfares into the affairs of any BUDDHIST MONASTERY as such but he uses to appoint a manager called SANGHKARTA for BUDDHIST MONASTERIES who uses to solve the religious disputes on the advice of the King . The people of SIAM considers his king as the form of the God on the Earth . Many INDIAN traditions had been followed in SIAM/THAILAND since ancient times . We can find the influences of laws made by MANU and KAUTILYA — both were ancient INDIAN law givers , on SIAMESE culture . As MANU has divided crimes into eighteen parts , in the SIAM’S schedule of crimes of nineteen , MANU’S list of crimes were also included . Like MANU , who had discussed about seven types of slaves in his book MANUSMRITI , SIAM also had devided slaves into seven categories . As per KAUTILYA’S political philosophy , during medieval period , the King used to abdicate the throne at old age for his elder son and he used to live the rest of his life peacefully . In SIAM similar traditions also existed . Like INDIAN ancient philosophy that the interests on debt should not be more than principal , are still followed in SIAM . And on the coins of SIAM , the images of GAJSHINGH RAJ and DEMON are ingraved .

LITERATURES OF SIAM & INDIA

In the Literatures of SIAM importance of Epics like RAMAYANA and MAHABHARATAS are considered as high as in INDIA . It is said that those early inhabitants from INDIA had brought with them both the Epics . But with some changes in the story , these Epics are considered still today as very pious . On the basis of the story of RAMAYANA , there is other book in THAILAND called FANAN SUN NANG in which we can find descriptions of the lessons given by BALI to SUGRIV . On the other hand , there exists a drama called UNNARAT based on the INDIAN Epic called MAHABHARATAS . In this book , there is a description about ANRUDHA , the grandson of LORD SRI KRISHNA , have been made in a vivid language . Apart from these HINDU Epics , we can find numerous books on BUDDHISM as such . In one such book called PRATHOG , description about the emergence of the universe has been given which appears to be similar to that of the INDIAN thought related to the emergence of universe . In this book one can get description about MANU , the writer of book called MANUSMRITI . Here name of MANU has been written as THOUM MANU . One can get description of BHAVANI/VAVANI in a book called POKHVADI . And in the SOMAN KHODOM book LORD BUDDHA’S life history has been written in a very interesting way . In FRAFROTISAT , there is description about the past life of LORD BUDDHA . We can find that the PALI language has been more propagated than the SANSKRIT language as such in SIAM. As we know that King RAMA-VII has translated the BUDDHIST literature called TRIPITHAK from PALI language to THAI language . JIN KAL NALINI and KAM DEVI VANSH are some of the books written in the THAI language which give detail description about the history of BOUDH RELIGION . In the book called NOK KHRUM , about the origin of the First Man in this universe (ADIPURUSH) , it is written that the First Man had come out of the egg of goose/swan . Here in INDIA , We have a GOLDEN WOMB (HIRANYAGARVA) theory of the origin of the universe . Thus , we can see the impact of INDIAN culture and civilization on SIAM in numerous ways .

*CITED IN JOURNAL OF SIAM SOCIETY , V (1908) III. PP-20-21.

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OUR NEXT BLOG WOULD BE ON THE HISTORY OF INDONESIA .

THE WORLD CIVILIZATIONS AND INDIA , PART-66

POLITICAL CRISIS OF THAILAND 2012-14

After about two years of YINGLUCK SHINAWATRA ( THE FIRST LADY PRIME MINISTER OF THAILAND ) regime , Protesters started movement against her government . A broad alliance of Protesters under the leadership of SUTHEP THAUGSUBAN , the former Deputy Leader of the opposition party , demanded an end of the THAKSIN regime ( AS PM YINGLUCK SHINAWATRA WAS THAKSIN SHINAWATRA’S DAUGHTER ) in the later part of 2013 . During YINGLUCK regime , a blanket amnesty had been given to the Protesters of 2010 . Apart from that all people involved in any type of political crimes including all convictions against TAKSIN SHINAWATRA , the former Prime Minister , had been included in the amnesty list , thus , they all were freed from the captivity . This action of the government triggered a discontent among the masses . As a result , as many as 400,000 people came on the road of BANKOCK against the YINGLUCK SHINAWATRA’S government . The Senate of THAILAND was urged to reject the bill regarding this to quell the reaction of the masses . But the attempt failed considerably . And the newly formed PEOPLE’S DEMOCRATIC REFORM COMMUNITEE ( PDRC ) along with other allies groups started putting pressure on the government to resgine . The opposition DEMOCRAT PARTY started mass resignation from the Parliament . The Protesters’ volume of demands ( reasonable and unreasonable— both ) increased many times . In place of YINGLUCK government , they demanded for the establishment of an indirectly elected ‘ People’s Council ‘ to govern the country . In response to such a massive protest by the people , YINGLUCK SHINAWATRA dissolved the parliament on 9th December 2013 and proposed a new election on 2nd February 2014 . But the PDRC’S demand was that YINGLUCK government should resigned within twenty four hours . On the other hand , YINGLUCK insisted that she should continue her duty till the end of scheduled election in the February 2014 . The Election Commission had started the process of the election in the country with the registration process for the Political Party’s candidates lists for 14th February Election of the country . YINGLUCK’S PHEU THAI PARTY in anticipation of upcoming election on 14th February 2014 , had prepared a list of 125 candidates to be presented to the Election Commission as such . But the Anti-government Protesters on 22nd December 2013 under the leadership of SUTHEP THAUGSUBAN and the newly formed party PDRC with approximately 270,000 Protesters marched towards the THAI-JAPANESE SPORTS STADIUM , the venue of the registration process for the upcoming election in THAILAND , and stopped the entire process of the election at initial stage as such . On the other hand , the Constitutional Court of THAILAND on dated 7th May 2014 , ruled that YINGLUCK SHINAWATRA would have to step down as the Prime Minister as she had abused her power by transferring a high level government official . And on 21st August , she was replaced by the army chief GENERAL PRAYUT CHAN-O-CHA . Thus , ended an other elected government in THAILAND .

THAI COUP D’ETAT OF 1914

The National Assembly of THAILAND made the army chief GENERAL PRAYUT CHAN-O-CHA as the Prime Minister on 21st August 2014 . Martial law was formally declared which ended on 1st April 2015 . After the Junta took control of the country , academics and political commentators try to propagate ideas of fascism to which PITHAYA POOKAMAN and JAMES TAYLOR called as NEW RIGHTS ‘. They were consisted of altraconservatives , reactionaries and former leftists . To JOHN DRAPER , an academician , fascism developed in THAILAND in 2014 . On the other hand , the ruling Junta , though promised to hold elections soon , yet before that they wanted to enact a new constitution for THAILAND . When the draft prepared by the ruling Junta was rejected by the government officials in 2015 . Then , a national referendum on the newly drafted constitution was held on 7th August 2016 in which out of 55% voting 61% people voted for the newly drafted constitution as such . And there was a provision in the new constitution that even an unelected person and other than a member of parliament could be appointed as the Prime Minister of THAILAND . This had given the way for the Military officials to be the Prime Minister of the country . Simultaneously , the new constitution also gave the NATIONAL COUNCIL FOR PEACE AND ORDER power and authority to make appointments of 250 members of Senate in the next government . Thus , indirectly almost all things now revolved around the Prime Minister of the country which even may be the military officials as such .

KING RAMA-X AND THAILAND

When the King BHUMIBOL ADULYADEJ (RAMA-IX) died on 13th October 2016 at the age of 89 in SIRIRAJ HOSPITAL in THAILAND , fifteenth day after his death , the then Regent PREM TINSULANONDA (a THAI military officer , a politician and a statesman who served as the country’s Prime Minister from 3rd March 1980 to 4th August 1988 , credited for ending the COMMUNIST insurgency and the accelerating economic growth , was Resent of THAILAND from 13th October 2016 to 1st December 2016 ) invited MAHA VAJIRALONGKORN to ascend to the throne of THAILAND as the 10th king of the CHAKRI Dynasty under the title of King RAMA-X . And King RAMA-X signed a new constitution in April 2017 so that democracy could again be brought in the country . In June 2019 , PRAYUT CHAN-O-CHA , a retired General and former military Junta leader , was elected the next Prime Minister of THAILAND by the both houses of the parliament . And thus , a civilian rule in THAILAND was ultimately restored with elected Prime Minister like Rt. General PRAYUT CHAN-O-CHA came to power .

NOTE : THE SOURCES OF THE BLOG ARE TEXT BOOKS AND OTHER WRITTEN MATERIALS ON THE SUBJECT .

TO BE CONTINUED ………………..

THE WORLD CIVILIZATIONS AND INDIA , PART-65

FAILED DEMOCRACY IN THAILAND

The post-1973 years in THAILAND could better be marked as a turbulent and sometimes bloody transition from military to civilian rule . The revolution of 1973 brought in THAILAND democracy but for sometime till 6th October 1976 . This was an unstable period of democracy in the country . It ended with massacre of 6th October 1976 . It was a sort of violent crackdown by the THAI police , lynching by the paramilitary forces and bystanders against the leftist Protesters who had occupied THAMMASAT UNIVERSITY of BANGKOK and the adjacent SANAM LUANG on 6th October 1976 . As per the government report 46 people were killed from both sides and as many as 167 were wounded . But as per the unofficial report more than 100 people were killed . Apart from various demands , their main demand was to prohibit the return of the former dictator THANOM KITTIKACHORN to THAILAND . In view of such turbulence the military rule was imposed in the country after the massacre of 1976 . The most of the period of 1980s were democratically ruled by PREM TINSULANONDA , who resorted to parliamentary politics strongly . Apart from a brief period of military rule due to the THAI Coup d’etat of 1991 for the next two years , THAILAND by and large remained a democratic country in all respects .

PM THAKSIN SHINAWATRA & THAILAND

THAKSIN SHINAWATRA , a THAI business man , a politician and a visiting professor , became the Prime Minister of THAILAND in 2001 . He was the leader of the populist party of THAILAND called THAI RAK THAI party which he formed in 1988 . He had served the THAI police from 1973 to 1987 . And he founded the mobile phone operator advanced information service called SHIN CORPORATION which ultimately made him one of the richest person in THAILAND . He was quite popular in the urban , suburban and rural poors due to his populist social programs . He declared a war on drugs in which more than 2500 people were killed . His government also launched programmes to reduce poverty , expand infrastructure , promote small and medium size interprises . He also introduced universal health care coverage for all . However , his rule came under attack from elite class of THAILAND . They saw danger of the parliamentary dictatorship during his government . So , in the mid-2005 , a well known media tycoon , SONDHI LIMTHONGKUL and his allies developed a mass protest under a newly formed party under the name of PEOPLE’S ALLIANCE FOR DEMOCRACY . After the dissolution of parliament on 19th September 2006 , TAKSIN became the head of the provisional government . And a peculiar incident happened when he was attending the meeting of the UNO in NEW YORK , THAI Army Commander- in- Chief LIEUTENANT GENERAL SONTHI BOONYARATGLIN in a Coup d’etre in September 2006 took over the command of the country . He abrogated the constitution , dissolved the parliament and the constitutional court was suspended . He was supported by the ANTI-TAKSIN elements and and the DEMOCRAT PARTY . However , the civilian government was restored by the General Election held on 23rd December 2007 under the leadership of SANAK SUNDARAVEJ of the PEOPLE’S POWER PARTY .

THAI POLITICAL CRISIS BETWEEN 2008-10

With five smaller parties of THAILAND , SAMAK SUNDARAVEJ of the PEOPLE’S POWER PARTY (PPP) formed the government on 29th January 2008 and remained in power till 9th September 2008 . Following numerous court rulings against him in a variety of scandals , SUNDARAVEJ was found guilty of conflict of interest by the Constitutional court of THAILAND caused end of his short term in office . He was replaced by SOMCHAI WONGSAWAT , a member of PPP . But on 2nd December 2008 the Constitutional Court of THAILAND declared the PPP guilty of electoral fraud in a controversial judgment which led to the dissolution of the party as per existing law of the land . For this the THAI media levelled it as judicial interference as this was called as ‘ Judicial Coup .’ As a result , on 17th December 2008 the leader of the DEMOCRATIC PARTY , ABHISIT VEJJAJIVA sworn in as the 27th Prime Minister of THAILAND . During this period two important moments came to the fore : 1. THE RED SHIRTS MOVEMENT ; and 2. THE YELLOW SHIRTS MOVEMENT . In April 2009 , the NATIONAL UNITED FRONT OF DEMOCRACY AGAINST DICTATORSHIP (UDD) or RED SHIRTS Protesters forced the government to cancel the FORTH ESTATE ASIAN SUMMIT going to be held in the ROYAL CLIFF HOTEL venue by smashing the glass doors of the venue to get entry into it . The blockade by the Protesters prevented the CHINESE Prime Minister WEN JIABAO from attending the Summit . But a very bloody action was seen a year later when the RED SHIRTS MOVEMENT resulted in 87 death and 1378 injured . And when the army tried to disperse Protesters on 10th April 2010 , the army was met with automatic gunfire , grenades , and fire bombs from the opposition faction of the army . It resulted in the retaliatory fire from the army with rubber bullets . During this period of the RED SHIRTS MOVEMENT against the government , there were numerous grenade and bomb attack on the government offices . On the other hand , the government supported YELLOW SHIRTS MOVEMENT/PROTESTERS were protesting against the RED SHIRTS . While the YELLOW SHIRTS protests were on , an unknown gunmen killed one pro-government protesters . The government termed it as the RED SHIRTS were firing against the civilians . However , YINGLUCK SHINAWATRA , the youngest sister of THAKSIN SHINAWATRA , won the General Election on 3rd July ,2011 with a landslide majority . The popular slogan during the General Election was ‘ THAKSIN THINKS , PHEU THAI ACTS .’ She was elected leader of the PHEU THAI PARTY and thus became the first Lady Prime Minister of THAILAND . Her oath ceremony was presided over by King BHUMIBOL ADULYADEJ himself . And one should know that the PHEU THAI PARTY was nothing but continuation of THAKSIN’S THAI RAK THAI PARTY .

NOTE : THE SOURCES OF THE BLOG ARE TEXT BOOKS AND OTHER WRITTEN MATERIALS ON THE SUBJECT .

TO BE CONTINUED ……………………

THE WORLD CIVILIZATIONS AND INDIA , PART-64

THAILAND AFTER SECOND WORLD WAR

THAILAND adopted policy of neutrality during the period of second world war . But on 8th December 1941 , JAPAN , a dominant power of the region , and after a few hours of attack on PEARL HARBOR , demanded to move JAPANESE troops across THAILAND to the MALAYAN frontier . The then Prime Minister of THAILAND , PHIBUNSONGKHRAM , accepted JAPANESE demand after a brief resistance . In view of improvement in the relation with JAPAN , THAILAND signed a military alliance with the former in December 1941 . As a result , the JAPANESE armies used THAILAND as a base to their invasion of BURMA and MALYA . Now acting as a puppet of JAPAN , PHIBUNSONGKHRAM declared war against BRITAIN and the US . SOUTH AMERICA and NEW ZEALAND declared war on THAILAND on the same day which was followed by AUSTRALIA also . But the US considering THAILAND as puppet of JAPAN refused to declared war on THAILAND . And after the war , when the Allied forces were declared victorious , the US blocked the BRITISH efforts to impose a punitive peace on THAILAND as such . MAJOR GENERAL GEOFFREY CHARLES EVANS of the 7th INFANTRY DIVISION of INDIA with EDWINA MOUNTBATTEN landed on THAILAND in September 1945 . SENI PRAMOJ , a great grandson of King RAMA-II , a lawyer , a Professor in the US , a diplomat and a politician of the THAI DEMOCRATIC PARTY succeeded TAWEE BUNYAKET as the Prime Minister of THAILAND . It was the first time in over a decade that any civilian had taken over the command of the country . Following the signature by THAILAND on the WASHINGTON ACCORD of 1946 , the territories that had been annexed by THAILAND after the FRANCO-SIAMESE WAR were returned to the FRENCH colonies like CAMBODIA and LAOS . These areas included PHIBUNSONGKHRAM PROVINCE , NAKHON CHAMPASSAK PROVINCE , PHRA TABONG PROVINCE , KOH KONG PROVINCE , LAN CHANG PROVINCE as such . Before signing a peace treaty with THAILAND , BRITAIN , however , demanded war reparations in the form of rice shipment to MALAYA . Then the ANGLO-THAI PEACE TREATY was signed on 1st January 1946 . It was followed by the AUSTRALIAN-THAI PEACE TREATY which was signed on 3rd April 1946 . FRANCE refused to permit entry of THAILAND in the newly founded UNO until and unless the latter returned the territories occupied during the war be returned to FRANCE . Similarly , the SOVIET UNION vehemently insisted on the repeal of Anti-Communist legislation passed in the past by THAILAND as such .

DEMOCRATIC ELECTION & THAILAND

The national election was held in THAILAND in January 1946 . PRIDI’S PEOPLE’S PARTY and its allies won the majority . In March 1946 , PRIDI became THAILAND’S first democratically elected Prime Minister . For THAILAND’S admission in the UNO , PRIDI’S first step was that he agreed to hand over the INDO-CHINESE territories occupied in 1941 . This resulted in what is called all wartime claims against THAILAND were dropped . Now THAILAND had started receiving substantial aid from the US . But a sad incident followed PRIDI’S government . The Youngest King of THAILAND , ANANDA MAHIDOL ( RAMA-VIII ) , who had recently come back in his palace from Foreign , was shot dead in his bed in June 1946 just three months after PRIDI became the Prime Minister of the country . At first sight it appeared to be an accident , but the medical examiners declared it as a murder. And three royal pages were executed though in an irregular trial . And King RAMA-VIII was succeeded by BHUMIBOL ADULYADEJ as a ninth monarch of the CHAKRI Dynasty and titled as RAMA- IX on 9th June 1946 . He was the world longest-reigning current head of the state until his death on 13th October 2016 . He had been a reigning monarch for nearly 70 years , third in the row of longest ruling monarchs of the world after King LUIS XIV and Queen ELIZABETH II who ruled for 70 years and 126 days . Under King RAMA-IX served 32 Prime Ministers beginning with PRIDI BANOMYONG and ending with PRAYUT CHAN-O-CHA . Amid suspicion that he had been in the regicide , the Prime Minister PRIDI was forced to resign in August 1946 itself . But without PRIDI democratically elected government could not survive for long . In April 1948 , the army brought PHIBUNSONGKHRAM back from exile and made him the Prime Minister . And PRIDI was forced to exile to CHINA .

The THAI TRIUMVIRATE included Field Marshal PLEAK PHIBUNSONGKHRAM , FIELD MARSHAL SARIT THANARAT and POLICE GENERAL PHAO SIYANON . When PHIBUNSONGKHRAM became the Prime Minister of THAILAND , he had to face two major developments at the International front : 1. Cold War ; 2. The Establishment of Communist Regime in North Vietnam . So far as internal scenario was concerned , once again political opponents were arrested and tried . Some of them executed also . All these executions were carried out by the THAI POLICE GENERAL PHAO SIYANON ( SRIYANOND ) . During his regime numerous counter Coups were carried out in 1948 , 1949 and 1951 by the PRIDI supporters . PHIBUNSONGKHRAM , all the times came out victorious . But in 1955 , after loosing his position in the THAI army , Field Marshal SARIT THANARAT staged a bloodless Coup in 1957 in which Prime Minister PHIBUNSONGKHRAM was replaced by SARIT THANARAT who remained there till his death on 8th December 1963 . During his period , the COMMUNIST PARTY OF THAILAND’S guerrilla forces operated inside the country with 12000 full-time fighters from early 1960s to 1987 . But never posed a serious threat to the state . Field Marshal THANOM KITTIKACHORN , a military dictator and a staunch Anti-Commmunist , came into power in self-coup and remained there from 1963 to 1973 . So , a military rule in THAILAND became rule of day during this period . He was appointed as the Prime Minister of THAILAND after SARIT’S death in 1963 . He established the UNITED THAI PEOPLE’S PARTY in 1968 . And he had reappointed himself as the Prime Minister in 1969 . He remained in power until public protest ( which exploded into violence ) forced him to step down in the so called 14th October 1973 uprising which led to three days violence followed by the sudden downfall of his government . THANOM flew to exile in the UNITED STATES . Some of his supporters flew to SINGAPORE . This was followed by the restoration of democracy in THAILAND .

NOTE : THE SOURCES OF THE BLOG ARE TEXT BOOKS AND OTHER WRITTEN MATERIALS ON THE SUBJECT .

TO BE CONTINUED ……………….

THE WORLD CIVILIZATIONS AND INDIA , PART-63

PHRAYA MANOPKORN NITITADA — THE FIRST PRIME MINISTER OF THAILAND

By now the constitutional monarchy was established in THAILAND . PHRAYA MANOPKORN NITITADA , a conservative lawyer , was appointed as the Prime Minister of SIAM/THAILAND on 10th December 1932 after the SIAMESE REVOLUTION of 1932 . The KHANA RATSADON (THE PEOPLE’S PARTY) had selected a non-party leader to be the Prime Minister of SIAM to avoid the suspicion that the Coup had only been carried out in order to come to the power itself . And an arrangement was made so that the revolting bureaucracy and the military could shared power in the NATIONAL ASSEMBLY . However , PHRAYA MANOPKORN NITITADA was ousted in 1933 by a Coup d’etat due to the conflicts between the members of the PEOPLE’S PARTY . The background of the Coup d’etat of 1933 was that PRIDI PANOMYONG , the then Minister of State in the MANOPKORN cabinet , presented his Draft Economic Plan (YELLOW COVER DOSSIER) to the then constitutional monarch RAMA-VII . The Plan had advocated about socialist solutions to many of the SIAMESE financial and economic problems . But King RAMA-VII branded the dossier as ‘Communist’ and attacked PRIDI PANOMYONG publicly about it . When PRIDI’S dossier was rejected by the King , it caused major disruption among the members of THE PEOPLE’S PARTY of SIAM . The Prime Minister MANOPKORN opposing PRIDI’S socialist economic plan dissolved his cabinet to oust PRIDI from the cabinet who had great support in the rank and file of THE PEOPLE’S PARTY of SIAM . The National Assembly was barred from any further meetings and judiciary was shut down . PRIDI was forced to flee to FRANCE . PM MANOPKORN then approved the Anti-Commmunist Act which empowered him to arrest those having Communist ideas and thoughts . And all the members of the central committee of the COMMUNIST PARTY of SIAM was arrested and imprisoned . This is called the ‘ Silent Coup ‘ or the ‘ April 1933 Coup ‘ in the SIAMESE history . On June 1933 , the SIAMESE COUP D’ETAT led by PHRAYA PAHOL and other military leaders immediately removed the Prime Minister MANOPKORN and the former declared himself as the second Prime Minister of the country . MANOPKORN was exiled to PENANG BRITISH MALAYA and lived there until his death in 1948 . And thus he became the first Prime Minister ousted by the Military Coup .

BOWORADET REBELLION AND SIAM

Now the age of rebellions have started in SIAM . The second Prime Minister PHRAYA PHAHON had started implementing some of the ideas of PRIDI PANOMYONG’S . The expansion of primary schools and Industrialization with state enterprises were gradually implemented . The expelled leader PRIDI PANOMYONG (BANOMYONG) was a socialist from the core of his heart . He founded the THAMMASAT UNIVERSITY in BANGKOK in1933 which remained a symbol of freedom and democracy . Being influenced by the totalitarian ideas of ITALY , JERMANY , JAPAN and , of course , KEMAL ATATURK , the nationalist group led by PHIBUNSONGKHRAM started strengthening the PEOPLE’S PARTY despite crown’s dissatisfaction with its functioning as such . It culminated into a reactionary BOWORADET REBELLION staged by a royalist faction led by King RAMA-VII’S Defence Minister Prince BOWORADET . He mobilized the forces from provincial garrison and captured the DON MUANG AERODROME and led SIAM towards a small scale civil war . After heavy fighting at the outskirts of BANGKOK , the forces of Prince BOWORADET were finally defeated and the Prince fled to the FRENCH INDO-CHINA . After that King RAMA-VII himself abdicated the throne and exiled to ENGLAND . He was then replaced by the King ANANDA MAHIDOL ( RAMA-VIII ) who was nine years old attending school in LAUSANNE , SWITZERLAND . He was the nephew of King RAMA-VII . During this period PRIDI PANOMYONG played a crucial role in modernisation of the THAI public administration . He created the local-self government system for the SIAMESE people . He also completed the legal code . Thus , PRIDI’S role in modernisation of SIAM was not less despite those years of turbulence as such .

PM PLAEK PHIBUNSONGKHRAM (PHIBUN) & SONGSURADET REBELLION

THAI Prime Minister PLAEK PHIBUNSONGKHRAM ( PHIBUN ) who came into power in 1938 after PHRAYA PHAHON , the military and civilian wings of the ruling party KHANA RATSADON became clearly divided and military wing in the party became more dominant . Thus , PHIBULSONGKHRAM’S government started moving towards militarism and totalitarianism . In view of FRENCH defeat in the Battle of FRANCE , the THAI leadership began an attack on FRENCH INDO-CHINA in 1940 resulted in FRENCO- THAI WAR in 1941 for consolidation of THAI population under SIAM .They suffered a severe defeat in the sea but dominated on land and in air . The EMPIRE OF JAPAN , a dominant power in the South-East ASIAN region , took over the role of mediator between SIAM and FRENCH INDO-CHINA and after a long negotiation the conflicts ended with THAI territorial gain in the FRENCH colonies of LAOS and CAMBODIA . In 1939 , PHIBUNSONGKHRAM changed the name of SIAM to THAILAND on the basis of consolidation of THAI race . As a result , the PAN-THAI NATIONALISM emerged in SIAM sole aim of which was to integrate the SHAN , the LAO and other TIE people residing in VIETNAM , BURMA and SOUTH CHINA ; so that the ‘ GREAT KINGDOM OF THAILAND ‘ could be established . Despite growing nationalism in THAILAND during the regime of Prime Minister PHIBUNSONGKHRAM , a sad moment also came into the fore . It was the SONGSURADET REBELLION , also known as the REBELLION OF 18 CROPSES . It was the claimed pretext for the political purge on 29th January 1939 by the government of PHIBUNSONGKHRAM against his political enemies and rivals , especially against PHRAYA SONGSURADET , an alleged leader of plot against the Prime Minister PHIBUNSONGKHRAM . PHRAYA SONGSURADET was the leader of the SIAMESE PEOPLE’S PARTY who participated in the SIAMESE REVOLUTION OF 1932 . But the root cause of the conflict began during the Coup d’etat of June 1933 when PHRAYA PHAHON PHONPHYAYUHASENA replaced PHRAYA MANOPKORN NITITADA as Prime Minister . And many of supporters of the later including SONGSURADET was permanently debarred from active politics by the new Prime Minister . So , SONGSURADET was exiled to SRI LANKA . During , before and after the Coup conflict between SONGSURADET and PHIBUNSONGKHRAM, who were both Ministers in the MANOPKORN government and members of the People’s Committee , increased many folds . And when the latter succeeded as Prime Minister of SIAM on 11th September 1938 , his Premiership was much resisted due to his dictatorial style and cronyism by SONGSURADET which even resulted in three assassination attempts on him — two by gunmen and one by poisoning . In 1938 , after his retirement from politics , but not from army , SONGSURADET was the Commander of the military school in CHIANG MAI . On 16th December , when he was commanding the military exercises of his students in RATCHABURI PROVINCE , he received an order from BANGKOK stripping him of the command of all units of army and forced him to retire from the army without pension . He was also expelled from the country who took resort to CAMBODIA . Further action against all the 51 suspects of the Rebellion were taken . They were ordered to be arrested and punished . And a special tribunal was created by the PHIBUNSONGKHRAM government to try those purportedly involved in the so called rebellion and assassination attempts on him . And SONGSURADET who escaped to CAMBODIA lived the rest of his life in abject poverty making his livelihood by selling confectionery on the street of PHNOM PENH .

NOTE : THE SOURCES OF THE BLOG ARE TEXT BOOKS AND OTHER WRITTEN MATERIALS ON THE SUBJECT .

TO BE CONTINUED ………………

THE WORLD CIVILIZATIONS AND INDIA , PART- 62

KING RAMA-VII AND SIAM/THAILAND

PRAJADHIPOK was the seventh monarch of SIAM under CHAKRI Dynasty . He took over the reign of SIAM on 25 November , 1925 as King RAMA-VII and remained there till 2nd March 1932 . He was the only monarch of the CHAKRI Dynasty who abdicated the throne during the revolution of 1932 . He was born on 8th November , 1893 in BANGKOK , SIAM to King CHULALONGKORN ( RAMA-V ) and Queen SAOVABHA PHONGSRI . He was the youngest child of the couple out of nine children they gave birth to and second youngest child of the total seventy seven of King RAMA-V . So , realizing this fact that he would unlikely to be on the throne of SIAM , he chose to pursue a military career . He was sent abroad to study at ETON COLLEGE in 1906 and later he joined the WOOLWICH MILITARY ACADEMY from where he was graduated in 1913 . He got a commission in the BRITISH Army based in ALDERSHOT . When RAMA-VI became King in 1910 , PRAJADHIPOK ( LATER KING RAMA-VII ) was commissioned both in the BRITISH Army and the ROYAL SIAMESE Army . And when the first world war started in 1914 , in view of SIAMESE policy of neutrality in the war , PRAJADHIPOK was ordered to resign his BRITISH commission and returned to SIAM immediately by his brother King RAMA-VI despite the fact that the former wanted to fight with his men at the western front . After his return from BRITAIN , he got higher rank in the SIAMESE military . However , as per SIAMESE tradition he became BUDDHIST MONK following customs of the most of SIAMESE men of the BUDDHIST society in 1917 . He was married to his childhood friend and cousin RAMBHAI BARNI at the SUKHOTHAI PALACE and started living a quiet life with his wife there . The couple had no child . And his succession to the throne was necessitated because all his brothers incuding King RAMA-VI died within relatively in a short period of time . So , PRAJADHIPOK became an absolute monarch of SIAM when he was only thirty two years of age on 25th February , 1926 after the death of his brother King RAMA-VI .

THE SIAMESE REVOLUTION OF 1932

The SIAMESE REVOLUTION of 1931 was started by a group of soldiers and civil servants to overthrow the absolute monarchy and to bring about a constitutional government in SIAM . The bloodless revolution started on 24th June 1932 about six and half years after the coronation of King RAMA-VII to the throne of SIAM . KHANA RATSADON , the People’s Party , formed by a group of rebelling SIAMESE military and civil servants . The main causes of eruption of the revolution were as follows : 1. THE COUNTRY WAS FACING SERIOUS ECONOMIC CRISIS AND THREAT FROM ABROAD ; 2. THE SIAMESE SOCIETY WAS UNDERGOING THROUGH DRAMATIC CHANGES AS THE URBAN MIDDLE CLASS OF BANGKOK GREW CONSIDERABLY AND THEY STARTED DEMANDING FOR MORE FREEDOM AND MORE RIGHTS . In February 1927 , a group of seven SIAMESE students met at a hotel on the RUE DU SOMMERARD in PARIS and founded what is called KHANA RATSADON ( THE PEOPLE’S PARTY ) . The name of all the seven were as follows : 1. LIEUTENANT PRAYOON PAMORNMONTRI ; 2. LIEUTENANT PLAEK KHITTASANGKHA ( An Army office-cum-student at School of Applied Artillery , FRANCE ) ; 3. LIEUTENANT THATSANAI MITPHAKDI ( An Army office-cum-student FRENCH Cavalry Academy ) ; 4. TUA LOPHANUKROM ( A Scientist studying in SWITZERLAND ) ; 5. LUANG SIRIRATCHAMAITRI ( A Diplomat at the SIAMESE Embassy in PARIS ) ; 6. NAEP PHAHONYOTHIN ( A Law student studying in ENGLAND ) ; and 7. PRIDI BANOMYONG ( A Law student of the Institut de’Etudes Politiques de PARIS ) .

All the seven revolutionaries made PRIDI BANOMYONG as their president and termed themselves as ‘Promoters’ . The party determined six principles which were as follows : 1. To maintain Supreme power of the THAI people ; 2. To maintain national security ; 3. To maintain the economic welfare of the THAI people ; 4. To protect the equality of THAI people ; 5. To maintain the People’s rights and liberties ; and 6. To provide public education for all citizens . To achieve these goals , the People’s Party determined to overthrow the present government of the absolute monarchy and to establish rather a constitutional monarchy as such . As most of the members of the party were western educated , when they returned to SIAM , they started enlisting members of the party from among army , navy , civil servants and merchant classes of the SIAMESE society . When their membership reached to 102 , the party was separated into four main branches : 1. The civilians were led by PRIDI BANOMYONG ; 2. The Navy was led by LUANG SINTHUSONGKHRAMCHAI ; 3. The junior army officers were led by MAJOR PHIBULSONGGRAM ; and 4. The senior officers were led by COLONEL PHOT PHAHONYOTHIN . When King RAMA-VII was away at KLAI KANGWON PALACE in HUA HIN , the plotters took control of the ANANDA SAMAKHOM THRON HALL in BANGKOK and arrested the officers of the palace mainly princes and relatives of the King . Their demand was that King RAMA-VII should become a constitutional monarch and the THAI people should be granted a constitution so that constitutional government in SIAM could be established . When King RAMA-VII returned BANGKOK ON 26th June 1932 , he greeted the plotters by saying , ‘ I rise in honour of the KHANA RATSADON ……. ‘ The King accepted the People’s Party’s request and the first permanent constitution of SIAM was promulgated on 10th December 1932 . On 14th October , King RAMA-VII announced his intention to abdicate unless his requests were mate . The People’s Party rejected the ultimatum . And on 2nd March , 1935 King RAMA-VII abdicated the throne . He spent rest of his life with queen RAMBHAI BARNI in ENGLAND till his death on 30th May 1941 . He died from heart failure at the age of 47 and his cremation was held at the GOLDERS GREEN CREMATORIUM in North LONDON in presence of his wife Queen RAMBHAI BARNI and a few close relatives in a very simple way .

NOTE : THE SOURCES OF THE BLOG ARE TEXT BOOKS AND OTHER WRITTEN MATERIALS ON THE SUBJECT .

TO BE CONTINUED ……………….

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