Thais throng Siriraj Hospital to make merit for late King

A huge crowd of black-clad people flock to Siriraj Hospital to make merit for the late King Bhumibol on Friday. (Photo by Seksan Rojjanametakun)

Thais from all walks of life thronged Siriraj Hospital on Friday to join in a merit-making ceremony marking one year since the passing of the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej.

A large number of black-clad Thais, carrying food and other offerings, arrived at the hospital early on Friday to give alms to monks.

The hospital and the Royal Thai Navy jointly held the merit-making ceremony and other activities to pay tribute to King Rama IX.

King Bhumibol passed away peacefully at 3.52pm on Oct 13, 2016 at Siriraj Hospital after a reign of 70 years.

At 5.30am, a total of 199 Buddhist monks began collecting alms from people, who lined the entire route from the Royal Thai Navy Convention Hall to Bovornsathanpimuk Road in front of the hospital’s main building.  Some of the donated dried food given to the monks will be sent to the Border Patrol Police School.

Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha, cabinet members and their spouses offered alms to the 89 monks at Government House on Friday morning on the first anniversary of King Bhumibol’s passing.

The number of the monks matches the age of the late King, who passed away at 88. Thai culture stresses that at the time he was in his 89th year.

At Lan Khon Muang in front of City Hall, Bangkok governor Pol Gen Aswin Kwanmuang presided over a merit-making ceremony for the late king at 7am. He led officials and people to give alms to 89 monks.

Many people were seen arriving at the Grand Palace early on Friday to put fresh flowers around the wall of the palace and pray for the late monarch.

A total of 199 monks participate in a merit-making ceremony at Siriraj hospital, Bangkok on Friday. (Photo by Seksan Rojjanametakun)

(Photo by Seksan Rojjanametakun)

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