The 107th National Day celebrated in Kanglung
His Majesty The King celebrated the National Day in Kanglung with the people of Sharchog Khorlo Tsipgyed on 17th of December, 2014.
The celebrations were graced by His Majesty The Fourth Druk Gyalpo and the Royal Family, with over twenty thousand people from across the eastern dzongkhags attending.
In an inspiring Ad- dress that was viewed live by the entire nation, His Majesty expressed profound pleasure to celebrate the significant occasion in Kanglung, with people from the remote corners of the East, and in the gracious presence of His Majesty The Fourth Druk Gyalpo.
“The National Day provides us with multiple opportunities: to recall the great sacrifices made by our forefathers for the sake of the nation, to fully understand our national challenges, and to motivate ourselves to do the best for the future of our nation. It is a special day in the year to once again recommit ourselves to worthwhile efforts to serve our country better,” His Majesty said.
His Majesty expressed infinite gratitude from the people of Bhutan to His Majesty The Fourth
Druk Gyalpo, and offered prayers for His Majesty’s long life and good health, in a special tribute.
“For the remarkable transformation His Majesty brought to the nation, the people consider His Majesty to be the embodiment of Rigsum Gonpo. When the nation’s security was threatened, his form was like Vajrapani (Chana Dorji) defending bravely the country without fear for his life. His Majesty took the cause of wellbeing and happiness of his beloved people like a manifestation of the Bodhisattva of Compassion, Avalokitesharva (Chenrizig). The clarity of His Majesty’s visionary policies that still shine and guide us in our path of good development was similar to that emanating from Manjushri (Jambayang),” His Majesty said.
His Majesty also shared concerns over certain economic situations, while commending the government for the ambitious scale of the 11th plan, and the manner in which they have handled the 4 hydropower projects.
“Our national ambitions, and the corresponding workload are increasing progressively,” His Majesty said, describing the enlarged scope of the successive five-year plans.
“It is good to be ambitious. From one standpoint, more is better and having something is better than not having anything at all. But we must also realize that increased workload compounds associated risks and possible failures. We must ask ourselves, ‘are we willing and able to take on this responsibility? Can our financial resources be matched by our human capital?’”
His Majesty said that the greatest risk to national development would be posed by corruption if it is left unchecked.
“Corruption is unambiguous- there is no great or small corruption. And no one can be above the law,” His Majesty said.
However, a greater risk than corruption would be to ignore corruption, His Majesty said.
“When the corrupt are not held to account, those who observe due diligence, work hard and professionally are most likely to be discouraged. We mustn’t allow the latter to lose morale by rewarding everyone indiscriminately, irrespective of his or her performance. That is why, corruption must be curtailed and, more than ever before, extraordinary service must be recognized and rewarded.”
“As our nation marches forward, we will be required to exert tremendous effort. But I have absolute confidence in our ability to achieve great things,” His Majesty said. “We are at the crossroads where the decision to act will make all the difference between success and failure.”
As per the tradition on National Day, His Majesty The King awarded Kabney and Patang, and medals to various groups and individuals in recognition of their services to the nation.
4446 civil servants received Service Medals, which was instituted from 2013. In 2013, service medals were awarded to 13,807 people.
Among the recipients of the National Order of Merit were 71 teachers who received Gold.
Dasho Sonam Kinga, chairperson of the National Council, Jigme Wangmo, founder of Draktsho, and Margrit Elliot, founder of Global Burn Unit, were recognized for their services to the country and people and awarded the National Order of Merit, Gold.
Lyonpo Thinley Gyamtsho, former health and education minister and former chairperson of the Royal Civil Service Commission, was awarded the Druk Thuksey Medal.
Dasho Chhwang Rinzin, managing director of Druk Green Power Corporation was awarded the Druk Khorlo Medal.
His Majesty Conferred the red scarf to Tashi Wangyel, eminent member of the National Council, in recognition of his learning and contribution to the democratic process and the nation.
His Majesty Conferred the lungmar scarf to the Prime Minsiter, Lyonchhen Tshering Tobgay.
‘Lung-mar’ is a compounded form of two words, lungserma (redgold) and Marp (Red). The scarf existed during the time of His Majesty The Third Druk Gyalpo, and has been reinstituted, with the Prime Minister as its first recipient.
Similar to the bura marp, the lungmar is conferred in recognition of excellent services to the nation, and does not represent the wearer’s post. For this reason, the recipient may wear the lungmar for life.
The Prime Minister was awarded lungmar in recognition of his contributions to the democratic process during his tenure as the opposition leader between 2008-2008, and with the expectation that he would serve equally well as the Prime Minister.
His Majesty also expressed special acknowledgements to the Armed Forces, Former Chief Justice of Bhutan, Lyonpo Sonam Tobgye, His Holiness the Je Khenpo, Zhung Dratshang and all other religious bodies, the Executive, Legislative, and Judiciary arms of the state, the offices of the constitutional post holders, and local governments.