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Phuket's Kata beach is to become the model for other island beaches

Bangkok Meeting Backs One Law for All, Phuket Beach Role Model

Thursday, October 31, 2013
PHUKET: One Phuket beach is to become the ''beach model'' for all of Phuket, and a senior regional commander has promised ''law enforcement on Phuket without greng jai (cutting slack) for anybody.''

These were the key developments at an important meeting in Bangkok yesterday that confirmed 2013 as a historical watershed for change on Phuket.

The meeting was chaired by Senator Tunyaratt Achariyacha, who heads the Senate Standing Committee on Tourism.

Major General Panya Mamen, the new chief of Region 8, which takes in Phuket and all southern provinces, said he intended to clean up the island.

The first 100 extra police for Phuket would arrive on the island about the end of the year, he said.

Phuket's Kata beach will become a role model for all Phuket's beaches, the meeting was told by Pamuke Acariyachai, who with Senator Tunyaratt owns the Kata Beach Resort and several other resorts in the region.

Rules governing behavior covering loungers, vendors and others who make their living on Phuket's beaches will be established at Kata and then taken to other beaches.

The Minister of Tourism and Sport, Tourism Minister Somsak Pureesrisak, who has led the proactive approach to change on Phuket, was also at the meeting.

Along with the imposition of a standard taxi queue, changes announced for Phuket International Airport include an increase in Immigration officers from 212 to 350.

Phuket's meter taxis have begun seeking fares across the island by switching on their ''FREE'' lights for the first time.

The Director of Tourism and Sport on Phuket, Santi Palai, said the Tourist Police - with enhanced power to make arrests - will soon establish a post at Phuket's airport in line with Don Muang and Suvarnabhumi in Bangkok.

Governor Maitree Intrusud is to join an anti-corruption planning meeting on Friday as the campaign by the Department of Special Investigation to clean up Phuket continues.

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Posted by phonus balonus on October 31, 2013 08:28

Editor Comment:

To make that kind of claim, phonus balonus, you not only need a real name, you also need to produce evidence. The top of your head is not evidence of anything much.

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I like the idea of creating a role model. I would've liked to have seen them tackle Patong first - arguably the most difficult. If they could crack that at the beginning, then rolling out to the other beaches would be much simpler. Kata, however, should be a lot more straight forward to get started. Let's hope they get it sorted quickly and roll out island-wide within this high season and not let things drag on too long.

Must remember Phuket is to host the Asian Beach Games next year in Nov/Dec and all the problems really need to be fixed and new systems operating effectively by then or there will be more egg on Phuket (and Thailand's) face.

Posted by Duncan on October 31, 2013 10:00

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'Greng jai/kreng jai' rendered here as 'cutting slack'? Generally I believe this very culturally significant Thai expression means something a little more like 'to be fearful of imposing on another' or 'to be disinclined to disturb or offend'.

Posted by Kaen Phet on October 31, 2013 14:06

Editor Comment:

Inserting your definition would make the first paragraph a little unwieldy, Kaen Phet. We opted for ''cutting slack'' over ''appeasement.''

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Dear Ed (you probably don't really need to publish this; it's way outside the basic thrust of the report - so more just like a little FYI) - I realise the necessity for being concise and succinct in the press/mass media more generally. My contribution was essentially for those readers (a handful I suspect) who may be interested in getting a deeper appreciation of what 'greng/kreng jai' actually means. Of course it's too unwieldy in this case, way too clunky. Indeed, this particular Thai term is one that resists an adequate, simple gloss ('cutting slack' or 'appeasement', as I'm sure the Thai staff at PW would agree, don't really convey the very culturally specific sense of the term) . This is the sort of word/expression that represents a real bane for the translator of Thai to English. I must confess I even feel a little 'greng/kreng jai' writing this response.

Posted by Kaen Phet on October 31, 2013 18:40

Editor Comment:

Clearly, the phrase has broader meanings but we gained a sense of what the commander meant in this case and our interpretation satisfies us. As with a Thai smile, usage is subject to interpretation, depending on circumstances. Yours is one, Ours in another. We don't pretend to be experts.


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