HM the King, in Royal Thai Navy tropical white uniform, accompanied by Her Majesty Queen Sirikit and Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn, left Siriraj Hospital by boarding a double-decker vessel called ‘Angsana,’ provided by the Royal Thai Navy at 4.30pm, cruising upriver to the Koh Kret area, an island in middle of the Chao Phraya River in Nonthaburi province.
Along the way north on the river, the monarch also inspected riverside communities and residents hit by last year’s mega-flood.
After travelling to Koh Kret, the Angsana cruise ship passed through the Klong Lat Kret and Klong Om Kret canals joining the Chao Phraya River.
King Bhumibol arrived at the pier in front of the Royal Irrigation Department Headquarters in Dusit district to preside over the inauguration ceremony.
Upon arrival, Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra reported to HM the King on the five irrigation projects, followed by a multimedia presentation about the projects.
The five irrigation projects initiated by the monarch are Khun Dan Prakan Chon Dam in Nakhon Nayok, Kaew Noi Bam Roong Dan Dam in Phitsanulok, Payang Bhumipat water tunnel in Kalasin, Thoranit-Narumitr Water Gate in Nakhon Phanom and Uthokvibhajaprasid Water Gate in Nakhon Si Thammarat.
The governors of the five provinces where the projects are situated led officials and residents to pay homage and pledge loyalty to the royals via a video link system.
After the proceedings, HM the King placed his right hand on a transparent stand to mark an official launch at 8.20 pm. The ceremony ended at about 8.30 pm.
The monarch, HM the Queen, and Princess Sirindhorn then returned to Siriraj Hospital on the Angsana cruise ship, where the King has been admitted for medical treatment since Sept 19, 2009.
People living along the river were encouraged to pay respect to HM the King on this occasion in a traditional way by putting up altar tables on their riverfront balconies on which pictures of His Majesty the King, flags depicting the royal initials, and floral offerings were placed.
Buddhist monks at various monasteries along the river gathered in front of their respective monasteries to chant blessings for His Majesty’s happiness.
Members of the public had lined up along Chao Phraya River since early morning, and braved the rains in the late afternoon, hoping to catch sight of HM the King during his boat trip along the river.
Report by : MCOT