Manisha Koirala ties the knot with Nepali businessman Samrat Dahal today in Kathmandu. Speculation is rife about whether President Ram Baran Yadav will come face-to-face with his bete noire, Maoist chief Pushpa Kamal Dahal Prachanda and if Prachanda who fought a 10-year war to abolish monarchy in Nepal, will meet ex-king Gyanendra at the gala?
The three-day ceremony started yesterday with an engagement ceremony and ends on Sunday with the reception. Gyanendra left for Bara district last Wednesday to inaugurate a new temple and will be camping in the Terai till Sunday.
Though he will return to Kathmandu by the morning flight on Sunday, its not certain if he will attend the reception.
As for Prachanda, his aides say he is unsure about attending the ceremonies. Top Maoist leaders are currently debating their future strategy as well as leadership after failing to topple the coalition government of Prime Minister Madhav Kumar Nepal after a year of protests.
If any major meetings are scheduled on Sunday, Prachanda would not be able to attend Manisha’s wedding reception, his son Prakash informed.
In 2006, when King Gyanendra held the controversial municipal election, Manisha had flown down to campaign for it. Maoists had retaliated by announcing a “ban” on the films of the granddaughter of Nepal’s first elected prime minister Bishweshwar Prasad Koirala. Manisha’s father, Prakash Koirala, was expelled from the Nepal Congress party after he consented to be a minister in the king’s cabinet.
Also invited to the reception is President Ram Baran Yadav who replaced Gyanendra as the head of state. He angered the Maoists by reinstating the army chief they’d sacked, an action that caused the fall of the Maoist government. Since then, the Maoists have been boycotting all official functions attended by the president.