'King will be punished if he fails to vacate palace'
Nepal Maoist supremo Prachanda on Friday threatened to "punish" the king if he did not vacate the palace in Kathmandu after next week's constituent assembly polls, saying "if he has some wisdom then he has to go".
"If he does not leave the palace, then our people and our new government will hold trial against him and punish him ...And it will be very bad for him," Prachanda threatened.
I think after the election, you (king) should go outside the people-hated palace," he told NDTV, adding "I think if he has some wisdom then he has to go".
Prachanda had earlier said the future of the monarchy in Nepal is sealed, not expecting any resistance from the palace once the assembly abolishes the centuries old institution after the polls on April 10.
With regard to the fate of the members of the royal family, he said it will depend on their conduct.
If they accept the people's verdict (of a republic), people will forgive Gyanendra's past crimes and he can live as an ordinary citizen. If he resists, then he will be tried and punished," said Prachanda, who is being projected by his party as the future president of Nepal after the abolition of the monarchy.
The CPN-Maoist leader on Wednesday had threatened to storm the royal palace in Kathmandu if the "feudal elements" tried to meddle with the poll process in the country.
We want to rebuild a new Nepal through the Constituent Assembly. But we will be compelled to seize Narayanhiti (Royal Palace) if we are defeated through conspiracy and our initiative to build a new Nepal is vanquished," the CPN-Maoist leader told party workers at an election meeting in the capital.
The election is a key element of the landmark 2006 peace deal that ended the decade-long civil war in Nepal and brought the Maoists into the mainstream politics.