Nepal King's defence of power grab sparks protest | india | Hindustan Times
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Nepal King's defence of power grab sparks protest

india Updated: Feb 20, 2007 12:23 IST

King Gyanendra's defence of his February 2005 takeover has sparked protests in the Nepalese capital and evoked sharp criticism from the Maoists and the government, which said any attempt by the monarch to cover up the coup will be "unfortunate".

Soon after the King in his Democracy Day message on Monday said that he was compelled to seize power because the government had failed to conduct polls and provide public security, more than 2,500 students and youths affiliated to the eight major political parties and Maoists staged demonstrations outside the Royal palace.

The protestors also chanted slogans against the monarch.

The government takes seriously the King's remarks defending his coup, Home Minister Krishna Prasad Sitoula said adding the remarks were issued without the government's consent.

"Any attempt by the King to cover up the February 1, 2005 take over will be unfortunate," he said.

"The King's statement is untimely and is against the recently promulgated Interim constitution," Tourism Minister and CPN-UML leader Pradip Gyawali said.

Maoist chief Prachanda said the King's Democracy Day statement posed a big challenge to the eight political parties.

The King's statement has also instigated the political parties to declare a republican state sooner, he said.

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