Thailand: Kings strips ex-PM Shinawatra of all decorations

King Maha Vajiralongkorn of Thailand has stripped off the ex-Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra of all the royal decorations which had been awarded to him due to his conviction in corruption and the most inappropriate flight from the country. The royal gazette made the announcement in less than 7 days after Thailand had conducted its first elections ever since a military coup had taken place in 2014.

Thaksin’s Pheu Thai political party is trying to bag a right to form the government along with the military-backed party Phalang Pracharat. The full results of the elections are yet to be declared. Thaksin has already stated that the elections are rigged. The Royal order of Chula Chom Klao was stripped off from the Thaksin by the royal command. The order is bestowed upon a person for recognition of his service to the country.  The order to revoke the royal order was issued by the King Maha Vajiralongkorn Bodindradebayavarangkun because Thaksin has been convicted in a corruption case and has been sentenced to a jail term by the Supreme Court’s Criminal Division for Political Office Holders. There are many other accusations also in his name as he fled the country which is a highly objectionable and inappropriate action.

Thaksin had been living in a self-imposed exile ever since he had fled the country in 2008 for avoiding the trial. He was later found guilty in absentia and was sentenced to two years in jail. The public revoking of the royal decorations will bring him down and his party in the eyes of common Thai population because the Thai hold the monarchy as Supreme and it is revered without question. It is regarded above politics. King’s sister had accepted nomination for a pro-Thaksin party before the elections. The candidacy of the Princess Ubolratana Rajakanya Sirivadhana Barnavadi was rendered inappropriate by the King and both she and the party were later disqualified to stand for the elections.

Thaksin although living abroad has remained a prominent figure in the politics of the country and all pro-Thaksin parties have won every election since 2001 even after he was removed.

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