It is the desire of His Majesty the King that Bhutanese citizens offer His Majesty just the tashi khadar for the Coronation, with no presents, said the Prime Minister, Lyonchhen Jigmi Thinley. The celebrations of the Coronation will be organised so that all well-wishers will be given the opportunity to offer His Majesty the khadar.
Members of the royal family will offer khadar in the Throne room on November 6, then the clergy, international guests, and officials will offer khadar at the kuenrey of Tashichhodzong, and the public will offer the khadar at the tendryil ground of Tashichhodzong. The Prime Minister added that the 20,000 people, who were expected at the tendryil ground, would also have the opportunity to offer the khadar from November 10.
The government has declared a week-long holiday from November 6 for the celebrations.
Lyonchhen Jigmi Thinley told the Bhutanese media that the government had not invited a large gathering of royalty and dignitaries from around the world, because His Majesty had wanted to celebrate this deeply auspicious occasion with the Bhutanese people. His Majesty also commanded that Bhutan should not waste funds on elaborate celebrations for his Coronation. The Prime Minister added that, with its limited infrastructure, Bhutan could not accommodate a large international gathering.
Lyonchhen confirmed that the President and Foreign Minister of India, Bhutan’s closest neighbour and friend, would attend the Coronation. He said that Mrs Sonia Gandhi and her family, who were close friends of Bhutan’s royal family, had been invited and were expected to attend. The government expects 32 diplomatic representatives from other countries, mostly those who were based in India.
On November 1, His Majesty the King will receive the sacred dhar of empowerment in the Machhen Lhakhang of Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal in the inner sanctum of the Punakha Dzong. His Holiness the Je Khenpo will preside over the ceremony in the presence of His Majesty the Fourth Druk Gyalpo.
On November 7, His Majesty will award medals of various orders to people in recognition of their meritorious service or contributions to society, said Lyonchhen. It is also likely that His Majesty will also grant amnesty to some categories of prisoners.
The Prime Minister said that his message to the people of Bhutan was that everyone can contribute to the generation of positive energy, emotions, and goodwill, that will strengthen the harmony among the people and unity in country as an expression of love, respect, devotion to His Majesty the King and the institution of Monarchy.
The message was especially targeted at Bhutanese youth, who should be conscious of the importance of the occasion at a time when Bhutan came into international focus.