Thailand's oldest reclining Buddha flooded

Thailand's oldest reclining Buddha flooded

Floodwater laps against the 1.300-year-old reclining Buddha at Wat Dhammachakra Sema Ram, in Sung Noen district of Nakhon Ratchasima on Sunday. (Photo: Prasit Tangprasert)
Floodwater laps against the 1.300-year-old reclining Buddha at Wat Dhammachakra Sema Ram, in Sung Noen district of Nakhon Ratchasima on Sunday. (Photo: Prasit Tangprasert)

NAKHON RATCHASIMA: The 1,300-year-old reclining Buddha image at Wat Dhammachakra Sema Ram, inside Muang Sema Historical Park in Sung Noen district, was partially submerged when the temple was flooded by mountain runoff on Sunday.

The Dvaravati-style sandstone image, 13.30 metres long and 2.80m high, is believed to date from the 7th Century CE, making it both the oldest and longest reclining  Buddha statue in Thailand.

Continuous heavy rain generated runoff from nearby hills that poured into Pae Non Hai village in tambon Sema, where the temple is located.

The floodwater flowed into the temple and flooded the structure sheltering the ancient reclining Buddha. The water rose halfway up the Buddha image.

About 160 houses in the village were flooded with water up to metre deep. Residents, their belongings and animals  were moved to high ground.

District officials said it would take a couple of days to pump the water out of the temple ground.

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