Thousands gather for cash handouts at an ordination ceremony in Ratchaburi

Several thousands of people flocked to Wat Potharam in Potharam district of Ratchaburi province this morning (Saturday) hoping to be lucky enough to get cash handouts distributed by a wealthy businessman on the occasion of the ordination of his son at the temple.

22-year old Thana Kamonpanthip entered into the monkhood at the temple in a grand ceremony arranged by his parents, Mr Somchai and Mrs Kwanjai, owners of a finance company and a resort in the province.

The ceremony featured a procession of elephants and horses bringing the ceremonial hosts and close relatives to the temple ground. But the highlight of the event was the distribution of one million baht cash.

100-baht banknotes were stuffed inside 10,000 plastic eggs contained in 10 plastic bags. Two cranes were brought into the temple ground where people were gathering to snatch the plastic eggs which were to be dropped from the cranes.

Several people brought with them boxes to catch the eggs while some others used their umbrellas. But officials told them not to unfold their umbrellas, fearing that other people might get hurt.

When the plastic eggs were dropped from the cranes, the waiting scrambled, pushing and pulling to snatch the eggs, resulting in a stampede, but, no one was seriously hurt. There were also reports on mobile phones and purses being stolen during the commotion.

Many were disappointed for having to return home empty-handed while others were lucky. Two boys managed to get six eggs or 600 baht.

Source: Thai Public Broadcasting Service (ThaiPBS)