A lead protestor has warned fellow activists not to drag and mention Thai monarchs into their demonstrations, fearing legal and public repercussions, as various democratic rallies continue to ignite throughout the nation.
Jatuporn Prompan, the chairperson of the United Front for Democracy against Dictatorship (UDD), said that the rallies should prevent mentioning Thailand’s monarchy, as the movement may face public fallout.
Besides the possible recoil of the public to the movement, the protestors are also inhibited from declaring offensive remarks to the monarch.
Legislated under Thailand’s Criminal Code, Section 112: violators of the lèse majesté law – “to do wrong to majesty” – carries a punishment of imprisonment ranging from three to 15 years.
Authorities had already punished an activist from the Northeastern part of Thailand. He was admitted to a psychiatric facility following his protest that read: “Lost faith is definitely not a crime!!! #Thiwakorn”.
However, the strict law and fear of public backlash didn’t dissuade some of the activists from venting out their frustrations about the monarchy at earlier protests.
According to Prompan, his statement wasn’t intended to scare his fellow activists but was instead aimed to serve as a cautionary declaration to the repercussion of dragging the monarch towards their rallies.
The lead demonstrator said:
“I’d like to ask these students to keep a clear head and bear in mind that Thailand will [always] be governed by a constitutional monarchy that will serve as [the kingdom’s] guard.”
Source: Bangkok Post