Onus on King for the mess in Nepal

This has reference to H.K. Dua’s front-page editorial
King vs. people” (April 23) and another editorial
King climbs down” (April 26). King Gyanedra Bir Bikram Shah Dev of Nepal is solely responsible for the serious political crisis prevailing in the Himalyan Kingdom.

The King failed to read the writing on the wall correctly and imposed autocratic rule by dismissing the democratically elected government. He put all the public leaders behind bars and took measures to restore peace which proved counter productive. He suppressed the democratic process with an iron hand which triggered his nemesis.

England has the finest example where monarchy and democracy co-exist; they are never at daggers drawn with each other. The queen is the nominal head the country where all powers rests with Parliament.

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Owing to India’s concerted efforts, Nepal’s power-hungry monarch conceded to hand over power to the political leaders — a move dubbed as “too little, too late”. The King is merely a prisoner in his palace and he disparately fought a losing battle.

KARNAIL SINGH, Sunny Enclave (Kharar)


When the French Revolution sparked, William Wordsworth, went into ecstasy and sang the paean, Bliss was it that dawn to be alive,/ But to be young was very heaven.

The guillotine, which slashed the necks of the King and Queen, didn’t spare either Danton or Robespierre. Such scenes repeated till Napoleon mowed down the last of the revolutionaries. In the Bolshevik uprising, not only Nicholas II with family was erased, even Lenin’s comrade, Trotsky, followed later. The Spanish Civil War slapped Franco’s dictatorship.

Nepal’s chief actors are the King, the seven-party alliance and the Maoists. Nepal has a historical fraternity besides a common border with India. Gurkha soldiers fill the ranks of India’s army.

Now that democracy has been restored in Nepal with the revival of Parliament and appointment of Mr Girija Prasad Koirala as the new Prime Minister, stability in Nepal is in India’s interest.

V.I.K. SHARMA, Jalandhar


The whole world witnessed the turmoil in Nepal with great concern because it does matter to all, in particular to India. The King dissolved Parliament on the pretext that the Maoists were getting heavy on Nepal and the elected  government was unable to tackle the menace.

The King’s blunder was that he never listened to people’s voice. As a result, all the political parties and people stood against him; the Maoists were already fighting against him. Now since the King has bowed to people’s pressure, belated though, democracy has been restored in Nepal.

Now that Mr G.P. Koirala has taken over as the new Prime Minister, his government should work efficiently and diligently to take the country forward.



At the right time, Mr Dua had given a sagacious piece of advice to the powers-that-be in New Delhi to support the people of Nepal in their hour of crisis. The maxim Vox Populi Vox Dei holds good universally.

The idea of military support to Nepal will prove highly detrimental to secular India. Let us be wiser from our experience with the Indian Peace Keeping Force in Sri Lanka.



I appreciate Mr Dua’s front-page editorial “King vs People”. Generally, wisdom dawns on the Kings late. And when it does, it comes in a small measure. This has exactly what has happened in the case of the beleaguered King of Nepal. The subsequent editorials in The Tribune on the developments in this little Himalayan kingdom are well reasoned and worth reading.


India should learn from US

Recently, Randy Cunningham, a former Congressman from California, was convicted for accepting bribes and gifts and sentenced to eight years and four months in prison. This is the longest term imposed on a current or former US member of Congress in modern history.

He was also ordered to pay $1.8 million in restitution for back taxes and forfeit $1.85 million in valuables he received as kickbacks. The judge in this case, while crediting Cunningham for his military service and for taking responsibility, questioned why he felt compelled to betray his constituents and his colleagues.

“You weren’t wet. You weren’t cold. You weren’t hungry and yet you did these things”, the judge said. “…you have undermined the opportunity that honest politicians have to do a good job”.

There are so many Randy Cunninghams all over India who have abused their position, but not one of them has ever been convicted and sent to prison. This explains why one country is so rich and the other is so poor.


Election improper

This has reference to Gen V.P. Malik’s book extract on Kargil war (April 22) and
Dr M.S. Gill’s rejoinder (April 24). The Election Commission’s announcement of parliamentary elections in the midst of the Kargil crisis was improper. In the given situation, the Army Chief had the right to express his concern.

Gen Malik has rightly highlighted the apathy to the military leadership by political masters and other institutions (here the CEC) when the country was still at war. He did not mean to question or infringe or dilute the autonomous authority of the CEC.

Gen Malik’s assertion reinforces the fact that due calibration and coordination at top level leadership — military, political and other institutions like the CEC — was found wanting even during a national crisis like the Kargil conflict. I don’t think Gen Malik caused any aspirations on the CEC.

Lt-Col BACHITTAR SINGH (retd), Mohali


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