EXCERPT: Thailand's Culture Ministry wants to ban tourists from getting religious tattoos after noticing an alarmingly high number of foreigners sporting deities that were inked in parlors in Bangkok, Phuket and Chiang Mai.

As the Phuket Gazette reports, Culture Minister Niphit Intharasombat told reporters this week that Phuket's Culture Office had noticed many tourists are getting inked up with religious images such as the Buddha, Ganesh and Jesus Christ on their arms, legs and ankles.

"We noted that these tattoos were all over the country, in particular in tourist destinations such as Khao San Road, Tawanna and Chatuchak Market in Bangkok, Chiang Mai and Phuket," he said.

"People with visible religious tattoos who engaged in 'bad behavior' such as 'sitting drinking alcohol and arguing' would damage the faiths through association," the Gazette quoted Niphit.

 
 

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