People-oriented ruler Tuanku Abdul Halim Mu'adzam Shah and Tuanku Hajah Haminah were accorded a symbolic royal send-off today upon completion of their five-year reign as the Yang di-Pertuan Agong and Raja Permaisuri Agong.
Tuanku Abdul Halim, 89, who was proclaimed the 14th Yang di-Pertuan Agong on April 11, 2012, and Tuanku Hajah Haminah left Istana Negara in a simple yet ceremonial event at 8.20am.
Their majesties were accompanied by minister-in-attendance Mahdzir Khalid and wife Datin Seri Noraini Abdullah and also Kedah Menteri Besar Ahmad Bashah Md Hanipah and his wife Hizam Awang Ahmad.
Tuanku Abdul Halim, who was in the official attire of Head of State known as the 'muskat', left Istana Negara in the official vehicle for the Yang di-Pertuan Agong, escorted by seven outriders and 20 sovereign escorts from the Royal Armoured Corps.
As they left the Istana Negara, the royal couple passed by an Honour Guard mounted by members of the 1st Battalion Royal Ranger Regiment led by Major Mohamed Zaid Mohamed Tazali who stood in salute.
Simultaneously, the national anthem 'Negaraku' was played as the motorcade proceeded to Parliament Square for Their Majesties' royal send-off to their home state of Kedah.
The royal couple arrived at Parliament Square to the sound of the 'nafiri' (trumpets) played by 14 members of the Royal Armoured Corps and were welcomed by Prime Minister Najib Razak and his wife Rosmah Mansor.
Their majesties were escorted to the dais, and walked past an honour guard which stood in salute before the national anthem was played by the Royal Malay Regiment Central Band led by captain Muhammad Nor Azizan Yahya.
At the same time, the personal colours of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong was lowered followed by a 21-gun salute.
Tuanku Abdul Halim inspected the honour guard mounted by 103 members and four officers from the 1st Battalion Royal Malay Regiment led by major Mohd Izham Ahmad Rashidi.
The state event proceeded with the recital of a prayer by Federal Territory mufti Zulkifli Mohamad Al-Bakri. Then followed another salute and the playing of the national anthem.
Their majesties then shook hands to bid farewell to the members of the cabinet, heads of department and foreign diplomats before continuing their journey to the Bunga Raya Complex of the KL International Airport (KLIA).
As the motorcade of their majesties proceeded along Jalan Parlimen, people from all walks of life lined both sides of the road to bid farewell to Tuanku Abdul Halim and Tuanku Hajah Haminah.- Mkini