BANGKOK, Thailand The near-impossible mission to rescue 13 young footballers and their coach from the flooded Tham Luang Cave in Chiang Rai last month captivated the whole world and now the Thai government has turned it into an interactive exhibition.
From the comfort of an air-conditioned exhibition hall within the popular Siam Paragon shopping mall, the public in Bangkok can catch a glimpse of the huge efforts mounted by over 8,000 rescuers to locate and rescue the "Mu Pa" (Wild Boar) footballers from the depth of a flooded cave.
Named "Tham Luang Incredible Mission: The Global Agenda", the 400 sq metre interactive exhibition was officially opened by Thai Deputy Prime Minister Wissanu Krea-ngam last Wednesday and will last until Sept 9.
The star attraction of the exhibition organised by the Culture Ministry, is undoubtedly the 10 metre-long replica of Tham Luang cave, meticulously set up to enable the public to sample the atrocious condition faced by rescuers throughout the 19-day mission.
"You would experience the dark, narrow, meandering tunnels inside the (replica) cave and find your way out with only a flashlight at hand," said the organiser to the one of the visitors before she attempted to crawl inside the replica cave.
Besides replica of the infamous cave, visitors to the exhibition will also be exposed to a variety of actual equipment used by the rescuers during the mission as well as exclusive footage of rescuers in action inside the cave.
A bronze statue of former Royal Thai Navy SEAL diver Saman Kunan who died during the rescue mission to save the boys is also on display in the interactive exhibition, along with his portraits and message of condolences by the "Mu Pha" footballers themselves.
Saman, who volunteered in the mission after knowing about the boys' plight, had been hailed as a "true hero of Tham Luang cave" by Thais.
The exhibition also showcased various congratulatory messages by prominent figures including United States President Donald Trump, David Beckham, Lionel Messi and others after rescuers managed to bring out all 13 boys and their coach to safety.
After Bangkok, the interactive exhibition will tour other parts of the country.
On Sept 8 next month, the Thai government at the instruction of King Maha Vajiralongkorn will host an event at Bangkok's Royal Plaza to express its gratitude to the 8,000 rescuers involved in the successful mission to save the boys.
Source; NAM News Network