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Impious government

Tuesday, September 21st, 2010
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The government’s restriction on former king Gyanendra from attendingKumari puja 2 the Kumari felicitation function in Basantapur shows that Shah is not a commoner just yet.

Gyanendra was forced to cancel his visit to the Kumari Ghar at the eleventh hour, apparently, due to security reasons. The government asked him to not leave his residence.

For human rights activists, the government’s order could be tantamount to denying the former king his right to mobility. For royalists, the order aimed at curbing his increasing popularity.

The home administration asked him not to attend the function as it feared possible obstruction en route to Basantapur by Nepali Congress activists and supporters who have gathered at Kamaladi, Ratnapark, and Bhrikutimandap for the party’s 12th National General Convention.

The government’s concern, however, shows that he is not a commoner. Welcome banners that read ‘His Majesty King Gyanendra…’, with his portrait on either side of the function’s gate where nine former Kumaris were to be felicitated, made this obvious as well.

The police had asked the organising committee to correct the banner prior to the program, but the organisers did not comply.

The program had been organised by World Youth Hindu Federation (WYHF) to felicitate former Kumaris at Basantapur.

Following the cancellation of Shah’s visit, the organisers chanted pro-monarchy slogans.

Dissatisfied with the government’s decision, WYHF has announced that ‘the people’ are not going to allow the president and prime minister to attend Wednesday’s Indra Jatra function at Basantapur.

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