Thais in black, white mourn King Bhumibol Adulyadej

Bangkok, Oct 14 (IANS) Thai people dressed in pure black or black and white on Friday to mourn the beloved King Bhumibol Adulyadej, who passed away the previous day at age 88.

On Friday morning, most Thais were seen in black around the busy Sathorn Pier, while less people, all in black, visited the usually crowed shopping mall Siam Paragon, Xinhua news agency reported.

All websites also turned their colour to black and white and even screens of shopping malls turned black with big letter in white reading “To mourn the King”.

On social media, many Thais changed the colour of their profiles black and white while some changed to a pure black picture as a sign of respect for their beloved king.

They kept posting pictures of the King and said they cried.

“One thing I learned from the King is to leave good memories to others,” said Bell Jiradet on his twitter.

Black and white ribbons can be seen on the wall of the government house.

Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha and the cabinet departed from the government house to the Grand Palace, a complex of temples and pavilions in the heart of Bangkok, around 11.30 a.m., to participate in Buddhist ceremonies to mourn the King.

National flags around the kingdom lowered to half mast, as ordered by the Thai government.

On Friday, a motorcade would transport the King’s body from the Siriraj Hospital, where he passed away, to the nearby Grand Palace.

Crown Prince Maha Vajiralongkorn will preside over the bathing of the King’s body, a traditional Buddhist funeral rite.

Around 12.30 a.m., many Thais are waiting for the process.

There will be a live coverage of the whole ceremony.

The King’s body is expected to lie in state for months of palace rituals, including at least 100 days of chanting by monks, reports said.

Most Thais have known no other monarch than Bhumibol and he was portrayed as father of the kingdom.

The crown prince will be the new king, according to the Thai constitution and Palace law.

Prime Minister Prayut said late on Thursday that the crown prince asked for more time to mourn his father with the people, and asked for a appropriate time to start to process of succession, when the parliament will invite him to ascend the throne.

–IANS

py/vt

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