Home News Bhutan Coverage Bhutan to make condoms available to monks

Bhutan to make condoms available to monks

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Health officials in Bhutan are making condoms available at all monastic schools as a means to minimize the spread of sexually transmitted diseases and HIV among young monks.

“We are making condoms freely available everywhere, even in monastic schools and colleges,” health minister, Zangley Drukpa, said. According to him the ministry has formed a special action group to deal with STDs in monasteries.

Warning signs of risky behavior among monks first appeared in 2009, when a report on risks and vulnerabilities of adolescents revealed that monks were engaging in “thigh sex” (in which a man uses another man’s clenched thighs for intercourse), according to the state-owned Kuensel daily.

The health ministry got concerned when a dozen monks — including a 12-year-old — were diagnosed with sexual transmitted diseases a year later, Kuensel reports. At least five monks are known to be HIV-positive, the youngest being 19.

Bhutan’s Commission for the Monastic Affairs says stricter discipline is a solution. While corporal punishment is banned, monks told Kuensel it is still practiced.

The 2012 report of the U.N. agency focused on AIDS response and progress also noted cases of HIV among Bhutan’s monks.

4 COMMENTS

  1. what???? condoms to monks??? are the monasteries in bhutan whorehouses??? should not these monks be practicing budhist dharma instead of “thigh sex”?
    i am not surprised that STD is rampant amongst monks. but of more concern is that the health authority should carry out checks on AIDS in monasteries before the disease migrate to the unsuspecting villagers (quasi-monks & corrupt rimpoches still prey on young village girls). homosexual practices is the norms amongst monks (in fact some senior monks are serial predators of young novice monks) and it is high time authorities put a check on these practices.
    the practice of luring (by promising monetary benefits to the poor parents) young vulnerable children into monkhood should be stopped. entry into monkhood should really be made voluntary for adults only (>=18 years old).
    Only in bhutan monks wear red, drive red cars, sleep with dasho aums & youngs girls, traffic bonded laborers to thailand & abroad, own prime lands (even receive free land at gyelpoising from home minister minjur dorji), run lucrative business venture etc etc. Where is the time for them to practice Buddhism then?

  2. I wish Darjee13 was more polite in his comment but his writing has a lot of juice. A lot needs to be done in Bhutan monastaries.

    Check your last para, Darjee13, you have written in such a way that it happens only in Bhutan. It is not true. That sort of corruption happens in many places. Catholic empire is plagued with it, Tibetan monasteries are too. Do you know who owns the Pashupatinath Temple in Nepal? And so on….