Friday, January 11, 2008

Public take part in rites

Public take part in rites

The Royal Household Bureau allowed the public to enter the Grand Palace to participate in the bathing rites for HRH Princess Galyani Vadhana.

Published on January 3, 2008

Around 15,000 people waited in the designated location within the compound of the palace yesterday afternoon.

The rites, conducted in front of the Princess's portrait, were held at Saha Thai Samakhom Pavilion.

The bureau requested people wanting to participate to dress politely. Women were asked to wear black long skirts and black court shoes.

HRH the Princess Sri Nagarindra's Medical Volunteer Foundation secretary-general Dr Pramuk Chanthawimon said he would continue giving medical treatment to rural people in remote areas, particularly in the North and South. Princess Galyani had been concerned about their health and education and had continually visited and assisted poor people after she became chairwoman of the foundation.

"The Princess donated Bt30 million to renovate a former building of the Medical Science Department as the office for the foundation. She also urged volunteer doctors to work with mercy and sympathy," Pramuk said.

Deputy Prime Minister Sonthi Boonyaratglin, Science Minister Yongyuth Yuthavong and former health minister Dr Sem Pringpuangkaew took part in the bathing rites.

People Power Party secretary-general Surapong Suebwonglee and Noppadon Pattama, the lawyer of former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra, were accompanied by seven other party members.

Democrat Party leader Abhisit Vejjajiva, secretary-general Suthep Thaugsuban, Banyat Bantadtan and 17 party members went to the palace.

Other participants included actresses Thanyares Engtrakul, Nadia Nimitvanich, Warattaya Nilkuha, Usamanee Vitrayanon and Thikamporn Rita-apinan.

Some members of the public had been waiting to enter the palace since 8am.

Kanda Inpa, 52, and Aree Chuenkwamdee, 40, from Wat Karuhabodi community in Bangkok' s Bang Phlat district, said they had heard the news of the Princess's death on TV.

"We feel very sad that the Princess has passed away because we had been signing our well wishes for her at Siriraj Hospital every day because we love and respect her," they said.

Chamaiporn Sarachat, 69, from a scout association in Bangkok's Lat Krabang district, said she heard the news at 6am and then headed to the palace with another 10 members. Other scout associations throughout Bangkok arrived later.

The bureau allowed people to conduct rites from 1pm until around 5pm before His Majesty the King arrived at the palace to conduct rites in the Phiman Rattaya Hall containing the Princess's body. Her body then was moved to lie in the Dusit Throne Hall.

Pongphon Sarnsamak

The Nation

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