HT Image
HT Image

Nepal's last king bids adieu to aides

Before making his final exit from the royal palace, king Gyanendra expresses his gratitude to his former ministers and advisors for their support.
By Sudeshna Sarkar | IANS, Kathmandu
UPDATED ON JUN 11, 2008 12:06 PM IST

Before making his final exit from the royal palace and beginning life as a commoner in an inferior summer palace in the suburbs, Nepal's last king Gyanendra began bidding adieu to his former ministers and advisors, expressing his gratitude for their support.

Dispensing with the elaborate protocol of the heady past days of power, the king-turned-commoner began telephoning former royalist prime ministers and other aides soon after the newly elected constituent assembly formally
proclaimed the nation a republic, abolishing its 239-year-old monarchy, Nepali weekly "Ghatana R Bichar" said on Wednesday.

The people he called up included Lokendra Bahadur Chand, the veteran politician he had appointed as prime minister in 2002 after sacking the elected government of prime minister Sher Bahadur Deuba, and Surya Bahadur Thapa, who stepped into Chand's shoes after the latter was forced to resign, following protests by the opposition parties.

The former king also telephoned Tulsi Giri and Kirti Nidhi Bista -- two other former prime ministers who were brought back from political retirement as his deputies when he seized power with the help of the army and imposed his direct rule for 14 months, the weekly said.

During the brief calls, the former king, stripped of all his titles and privileges by the government, introduced himself simply as Gyanendra Shah and addressed his old mentors with respect.

"You supported my elder brother and myself," the former king reportedly told the stunned royalists. "I have called to express my gratitude for that."

On the eve of beginning a new and uncertain life, the deposed king took care to reassure his followers.

"Don't worry, everything will be all right," he reportedly told them. "Time heals everything."

It was also a gesture of extending the olive branch.

Since the fall of the royal government in 2006, some of his old ministers had begun criticising him, holding him responsible for the collapse of his 14-month government.

Giri had accused the former king of being headstrong and not heeding the advice of his cabinet while Thapa fought the April election in support of a republic.

The calls were made on the eve of his final departure from the Narayahity royal palace, where he had shifted in July 2002, 13 months after being crowned the new king of Nepal, following the stunning assassination of his
elder brother Birendra in the palace.

Before the final exit at night, regarded as an auspicious time, the deposed king will hold a press conference in the palace.

Angered by the way political parties and media have projected him as a villain, Gyanendra, who imposed media censorship during his direct rule and banned the criticism of the royal family, will present his side of the story to the media.

He has always maintained that the royal coup three years ago was intended to end the Maoist insurgency and restore peace and stability in the country.

Gyanendra stepped down as head of government in April 2006 after a mass revolt. Two years later, Nepal held its first constituent Assembly election that saw the nation vote in favour of abolishing monarchy.

Finally, on May 28, the Assembly formally proclaimed Nepal a secular,federal democratic republic and asked the former king and queen to vacate the Narayanhity palace in 15 days.

The former royals will depart from the palace on Wednesday night, 24 hours before the expiry of the deadline.

The government has allowed them to stay in the Nagarjuna summer palace, a former royal hunting lodge, till they are able to find suitable accommodation.

The former king's stepmother Ratna Shah and a former palace maid, who was the concubine of his grandfather Tribhuvan, have been allowed to stay on in the palace.

SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
app
Close
Members of the National Guard walk past the dome of the Capitol Building on Capitol Hill in Washington.(AP)
Members of the National Guard walk past the dome of the Capitol Building on Capitol Hill in Washington.(AP)

US Capitol riots: FBI questioning dozens in killing of police officer, assaults

Reuters
PUBLISHED ON JAN 16, 2021 06:09 AM IST
The FBI detailed its investigation in a memo sent to the private sector and others on Friday, the New York Times reported.
Close
While the number of deaths is likely to recede as more and more people get vaccinated, herd immunity won’t be achieved until at least 70% of the population is protected, experts including Anthony Fauci have said.(Biplov Bhuyan/HT photo for representation)
While the number of deaths is likely to recede as more and more people get vaccinated, herd immunity won’t be achieved until at least 70% of the population is protected, experts including Anthony Fauci have said.(Biplov Bhuyan/HT photo for representation)

World hits 2 million Covid-19 deaths with cases still surging

Bloomberg
PUBLISHED ON JAN 16, 2021 06:04 AM IST
Overall, the U.S. is leading all countries in deaths with 388,705, with Brazil, India, Mexico and the U.K. next in line.
Close
The National Rifle Association (NRA) headquarters in Fairfax, Virginia.(AFP)
The National Rifle Association (NRA) headquarters in Fairfax, Virginia.(AFP)

National Rifle Association files bankruptcy, citing New York politics

Bloomberg
PUBLISHED ON JAN 16, 2021 06:03 AM IST
New York has been at the forefront of pursuing the NRA in court, with Attorney General Letitia James suing to dissolve the organization and accusing leader Wayne LaPierre and three others of fleecing it.
Close
On January 6, a group of Trump supporters stormed the US Capitol to protest legislators confirming electoral slates from battleground US states they thought were invalid.(REUTERS)
On January 6, a group of Trump supporters stormed the US Capitol to protest legislators confirming electoral slates from battleground US states they thought were invalid.(REUTERS)

Trump's approval rating plummets to all-time low of 29% following Capitol riots

ANI
PUBLISHED ON JAN 16, 2021 06:02 AM IST
The poll said 68 per cent of people disapprove of his handling of the job, while 52 per cent say Trump bears a lot of responsibility for the violence and destruction that took place at the Capitol last week.
Close
Richard Barnett, a supporter of US President Donald Trump sits inside the office of US Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi as he was one of the many demonstrators who breeched security and entered the Capitol(AP)
Richard Barnett, a supporter of US President Donald Trump sits inside the office of US Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi as he was one of the many demonstrators who breeched security and entered the Capitol(AP)

US Capitol riots: Pelosi's office invader Barnett to be put under house arrest

AP
PUBLISHED ON JAN 16, 2021 06:00 AM IST
Barnett is charged with unlawfully entering a restricted area with a lethal weapon — in this case, a stun gun. Barnett also is charged with disorderly conduct and theft of public property.
Close
Biden nominated Eric Lander as director of Office of Science and Technology Policy and adviser on science.(Reuters)
Biden nominated Eric Lander as director of Office of Science and Technology Policy and adviser on science.(Reuters)

Biden taps Eric Lander as science adviser, puts in cabinet

AP
PUBLISHED ON JAN 16, 2021 05:56 AM IST
Saying “science will always be at the forefront of my administration,” Biden said he is boosting the science advisor post to Cabinet level, a first in White House history.
Close
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi holds a news conference at the Capitol in Washington. (AP)
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi holds a news conference at the Capitol in Washington. (AP)

Pelosi calls for prosecution of Congress members who aided Capitol siege

Reuters
PUBLISHED ON JAN 16, 2021 05:49 AM IST
"If in fact it is found that members of Congress were accomplices to this insurrection, if they aided and abetted the crimes, there may have to be actions taken beyond the Congress, in terms of prosecution for that," Pelosi said.
Close
The Democrat would invoke the Defense Production Act to increase production of equipment needed to distribute the vaccines, such as glass vials, needles and syringes, according to a document released by his transition team.(AP)
The Democrat would invoke the Defense Production Act to increase production of equipment needed to distribute the vaccines, such as glass vials, needles and syringes, according to a document released by his transition team.(AP)

Retired doctors and more syringes: Biden lays out plan to get America vaccinated

Reuters
PUBLISHED ON JAN 16, 2021 05:47 AM IST
Biden unveiled a $1.9 trillion stimulus plan on Thursday that includes $20 billion for vaccine distribution as well as $50 billion for coronavirus testing, which experts and officials said should help speed the process up.
Close
WhatsApp on Friday said it would delay the new policy launch to May from February(MINT_PRINT)
WhatsApp on Friday said it would delay the new policy launch to May from February(MINT_PRINT)

WhatsApp to delay launch of update business features after privacy backlash

Reuters
PUBLISHED ON JAN 16, 2021 05:42 AM IST
WhatsApp users received a notification this month that it was preparing a new privacy policy and terms, and it reserved the right to share some user data with the Facebook app.
Close
US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin(Reuters/ File photo)
US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin(Reuters/ File photo)

US imposes sanctions on Cuba citing human rights violations

AP
PUBLISHED ON JAN 16, 2021 05:42 AM IST
The sanctions will be implemented under the Global Magnitsky Human Rights Accountability Act and directed “against the perpetrators of serious human rights abuses and corruption throughout the world,” the US government said in a news release.
Close
The Facebook logo is displayed on a mobile phone.(Reuters/ File photo)
The Facebook logo is displayed on a mobile phone.(Reuters/ File photo)

Facebook blocks creation of events near DC, state Capitols

Bloomberg
PUBLISHED ON JAN 16, 2021 05:40 AM IST
The social media giant will also restrict some features for US users based on signals like repeatedly violating the company’s policies.
Close
Jan Kubis speaks during a news conference.(Reuters/ File photo)
Jan Kubis speaks during a news conference.(Reuters/ File photo)

UN Security Council approves Kubis as new Libya mediator

Reuters
PUBLISHED ON JAN 16, 2021 05:29 AM IST
Kubis, a former Slovakian foreign minister, is currently the UN special coordinator for Lebanon. He has also served as the UN special envoy in Afghanistan and Iraq.
Close
Pharmacist organizes the empty vials of the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine.(AP)
Pharmacist organizes the empty vials of the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine.(AP)

Pfizer to cut vaccine shipments as Belgian factory renovated

Bloomberg
PUBLISHED ON JAN 16, 2021 05:22 AM IST
Pfizer and its German partner are under growing pressure to make more shots as countries around the world rush to immunize vulnerable people. The companies recently increased their output target for this year by more than 50% to 2 billion doses.
Close
US President Donald Trump addressing a campaign rally in Dalton, Georgia, US.(Reuters/ File photo)
US President Donald Trump addressing a campaign rally in Dalton, Georgia, US.(Reuters/ File photo)

Trump directs government to minimize procurement from China

Reuters
PUBLISHED ON JAN 16, 2021 05:14 AM IST
The announcement comes less than a week before Trump leaves office to be succeeded by Democrat Joe Biden on Jan. 20. It was the latest in a series of steps targeting China, which analysts see as a bid to lock in a tough approach to Beijing.
Close
A White House spokesperson, however, denied that the President’s daughter and son-in-law had restricted the Secret Service agents’ entry into their house(AP)
A White House spokesperson, however, denied that the President’s daughter and son-in-law had restricted the Secret Service agents’ entry into their house(AP)

US agents guarding Ivanka, Jared had to rent $3k/month flat

By HT Correspondent, New Delhi
UPDATED ON JAN 16, 2021 04:20 AM IST
Asked not to use the bathrooms inside the couple’s sprawling 5,000-square-foot house in the elite Kalorama neighbourhood, several US agents resorted to using a porta-potty as well as bathrooms at the nearby homes of former President Barack Obama, and Vice-President Mike Pence.
Close
SHARE
Story Saved
OPEN APP