Kyauk Taw: Burmese regime has taken two ancient Arakanese canons that were recently exhibited in Mahamuni Museum in Kyauktaw to Sittwe in Arakan State with a plan to send them to Burma’s Capital Naypyitaw.
“One of the cannons is made of bronze while another is of iron. They have already been taken from the local museum to Sittwe on the orders of U Zaw Zaw Tun, the Director of the Directorate of the Cultural Ministry in Arakan State. It is heard that the canons will be sent to Naypyitaw very soon”, said U Kyaw Tun Aung, a retired Arakanese archaeologist.
The canons were said to be found by local farmer U Aung Sein Win while he was digging the dykes of his paddy fields near Waygreechaung Village in Kyauktaw Township on 7 March 2012.
U Aung Sein Win handed over the canons to the township administrator on 9 March 2012, and then the administrator transferred them to the Mahamuni Museum for exhibition.
“The bronze canon is 3 feet 9 inches long and 4 inches wide in diameter and is made in the form of dragon while the iron one is 4 feet long and 3 inches wide in diameter and made in the form of sugar-cane stem. They were taken away from the museum in Kyauktaw to Sittwe on 24 March by U Kyi Shein, the curator of the Mrauk-U Museum, by the order of U Zaw Zaw Tun”, said U Kyaw Tun Aung.
According to him, the cannons were used in the Mrauk-U age in Arakan in 17th and 18th century A.D. to fight against the Portuguese and Dutch invading forces.
Thu Mrat Maha Aung Mray, a well-known historian from Kyauktaw, said it is a great loss for all Arakanese people to lose the ancient canons from the land of Arakan State.
“Mahamuni Museum opened here in Kyauktaw with the main aims to preserve and exhibit our ancient cultural heritages that are found from the area. We are very upset to know those ancient canons were taken away from the museum to Naypyitaw. We feel that the loss of those canons from the museum are a loss for all Arakanese people”, said Thu Mrat Maha Aung Mray.
It is learnt that the backlash against the Burmese authorities is growing among the local people in Kyauktaw after the newly-found ancient Arakanese artifacts were taken away from the museum in their area to Burma’s new capital Naypyitaw.