BANGKOK: Thailand’s party scene may get back into gear in a fortnight after a shutdown to mourn the death of King Bhumibol Adulyadej, the junta suggested Tuesday.
The death of 88-year-old Bhumibol Adulyadej on October 13 thrust a country renowned for its colourful nightlife into profound mourning.
Thais have donned black, soap operas have been pulled from television schedules, festivals cancelled and the music even turned down at Bangkok’s seedier bars – with go-go dancers swapping the usual garish bikinis for sombre black outfits.
But the junta leader signalled that nightlife may soon be allowed to creep back – along with cultural celebrations, concerts and the beloved soap operas – when a 30-day initial mourning period ends on November 14.
“Television will return to normal,” Prime Minister Prayut Chan-O-Cha told reporters, albeit warning actors to dress demurely on screen and remain “polite” befitting the national mood.
In a nod to a relaxation on restrictions on nightlife he said, “Thailand is a country of tourism,” adding discussions were continuing over the loosening of controls on indoor and outdoor venues.
A government official said later nine types of events and venues would operate as normal, including nightclubs, pubs and bars.