Eight-year-olds charged for obstruction in run-up to referendum in Thailand

| Updated: Aug 23, 2017 11:20 IST

London, July 24 (ANI): The authorities have charged two eight-year-old girls in Thailand for tearing down voter lists for the upcoming referendum in the country, where ruling junta is trying its best to hold onto power. The eight-year-olds confessed of tearing down voter lists outside a school in northern Thailand because they liked the paper's pink colour. The police commander of northern Kamphaeng Phet province, Damrong Phetpong, said they have been charged with "obstructing the referendum process, destroying official documents and destroying common public property," reports the Guardian. He added they will not face jail time as the Thai law exempts anyone under the age of 10 from criminal punishment, adding that police were still duty-bound to file the charges. The ruling military junta is determined to see its draft Constitution passed in the referendum on August 7 and has outlawed critical discussion of the document with a 10-year prison sentence. Any kind of campaigning is also banned and the authorities have warned scores of people for handing out critical leaflets or wearing Vote No t-shirts. The junta, which took power from an elected government in May 2014, says its draft constitution will ensure stability in the country rocked by political turmoil. However, critics say that the charter would give power to the military over elected governments. (ANI)