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Smoke Covering Delhi

This is an update on recent news you may have been hearing in the news about the sudden smog cover in Delhi.

This is inappropriately being labelled as general ‘pollution’. I would like to clarify that this is a situation mainly caused by the burning of crop fields during the end of the harvest season in states adjacent to Delhi. The farmers do that while clearing fields in preparation for the sowing of the next crop. Unfortunately this burn off has consequences, – the smoke cloud that has settled over Delhi and has caused the current situation.

The government has been trying to discourage them from the practice, it has now been stopped. We do expect the situation to clear up in the next few days. It is also expected to rain and that will help the situation

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Royal Cremation of King Rama IX

Yesterday, the Bureau of the Royal Household officially announced the closure of the Grand Palace and Emerald Buddha from the 1st to the 29th of October 2017 in preparation for the Royal Cremation of King Rama IX on Thursday, the 26th of October.

The Tourism Authority of Thailand issued this statement along with other useful information.

The Royal Thai Government has announced that the Royal Cremation for the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej is scheduled for 25-29 October, 2017. Thursday, 26 October, will be the royal cremation day, and it has been declared a public holiday by the Cabinet to allow the people to take part in paying a final tribute to the late King.

During the process of the Royal Cremation which will last five days, tourist attractions across Thailand will be open as usual. This is with the exception of Bangkok’s Grand Palace and the Temple of the Emerald Buddha, which will be closed from 1-29 October, 2017, as they will be the venue of the Royal Cremation. All transport, banks, shopping areas, hospitals and other public services will be operating as usual.

However, the Tourism Authority of Thailand would like to recommend that any visitors with travel or tourism plans reconfirm with agents and check local media regularly as well as follow the advice of the local authorities for announcements and updates. They should also be aware that in some areas transportation could be affected. We also ask tourists and visitors for their understanding and patience should they experience delays or some routes may be closed to traffic.

In this time of great sadness and mourning, we would like to ask that everyone uses their judgment regarding how or should they make arrangements for events planned in Thailand. Also, we would like to ask visitors for their understanding that this is a sensitive time for Thailand, and they should respect the feelings and sensitivities of the Thai people.

Many Thai people will be wearing black clothes as a sign of mourning. This is not required of visitors but if possible, they should wear respectful clothing when in public. We also would like to request that the solemnity of the Royal Cremation is observed, and visitors should refrain from conducting any inappropriate or disrespectful behaviour.

The world is welcome to Thailand during this historic period. Visitors to the kingdom at this time will get to see the great love and reverence that the Thai people have for their beloved King in the way they mourn and pay their respects. And during this time, Thailand is thankful for our friends coming to share their sadness and pass on their condolences. This gesture of empathy and friendship will be remembered by the people of Thailand for decades to come.