King Maha Vajiralongkorn officially crowned Rama X of Thailand
Thailand officially crowned its new King Maha Vajiralongkorn with ‘Great Crown of Victory’ (one of five Royal Regalia i.e. symbols of kingship). He received a symbolic nine-tiered umbrella conferring him as ‘King Rama X of Thailand’. This coronation ceremony marks first ascension of a new monarch in past seven decades.
King Maha Vajiralongkorn
- He became crown prince and official heir to throne in 1972.
- He has been on throne since 2016, but according to Thai tradition he cannot be considered a divine representative on Earth nor main patron of Buddhism until he is consecrated (declared sacred). For this three day coronation ceremony began in Bangkok on 4 May 2019.
- He is now titled Rama X, (or 10th monarch of the Chakri dynasty).
- Chakri dynasty, has been reigning since 1782. The last coronation was held for king’s father Bhumibol Adulyadej in 1950.
- He recently married to his royal consort who would now be new Queen Suthida. This is kings forth marriage.
- Thailand has a constitutional monarchy, but royal family is highly respected by Thais and holds considerable power. The country also has strict laws, known as ‘lese majeste’, which bans public criticism of monarchy. It thus shields royal family from public view and scrutiny.
- Thailand is being run by an arch-royalist junta since 2014 military coup.
- Even after general election held on 24 March 2019 (first since 2014 army coup) a new government is yet to be declared.
- Although monarchy takes primacy in country but it is supported by the army.