|Dipendra of Nepal|
|Thursday, 20 November 2008 16:49|
Dipendra Bir Bikram Shah
Born: June 27, 1971
Died: June 4, 2001
Cause of death: Gunshot to the side of head.
Notable because: Killed his family at a royal dinner, then shot himself. Lingered in a coma for 3 days, during which time he was officially King as he had killed his father.
Dipendra Bir Bikram Shah was King of Nepal from June 1 to June 4, 2001. As Crown Prince, he killed his family at a royal dinner, including the previous King, on June 1, 2001. Dipendra was also mortally wounded by what the official report characterizes as a self-inflicted gunshot to the side of the head. After the murder of his father, he officially became king for three days as he lingered in a coma.
According to the official report, Dipendra had been drinking heavily and had "misbehaved" with a guest which resulted in his father King Birendra telling his son to leave the party. The drunken Dipendra was taken to his room by his brother Prince Nirajan and cousin Prince Paras.
One hour later Dipendra returned to the party armed with an MP5K and a M16 and fired a single shot into the ceiling before turning the gun on his father King Birendra. Seconds later Dipendra shot one of his aunts. He then shot his uncle Dhirendra in the chest at point-blank range when he tried to stop Dipendra. During the carnage Prince Paras suffered slight injuries and managed to save at least three royals, including two children, by pulling a sofa over them.
During the attack, Dipendra darted in and out of the room firing shots each time. His mother Queen Aiswarya who came into the room when the first shots were fired left quickly, looking for help.Dipendra's mother Aishwarya and his brother Nirajan confronted him in the garden of the palace where they were both shot dead. Dipendra then proceeded to a small bridge over a stream running through the palace where he shot himself
Dipendra received his early education at Budhanilkantha School, Kathmandu.
He was then educated at Eton College, England. The prince had been disciplined while at Eton for selling alcohol.
After Eton, he attended Tribhuvan University in Nepal and later joined the Military Academy, Kharipati. He studied through his master's degree from Tribhuvan University and was a PhD student in the same University. He was known to have been skilled in karate.
Official reports state that Dipendra assassinated family members because of anger over a marriage dispute. Dipendra's choice of a bride was Devyani Rana, daughter of Pashupati SJB Rana (C Class), a member of the Rana clan, against whom the Shah family of kings have a historic animosity. In recent times, though, Shah kings and princes have married almost exclusively members of the A Class Rana family. The Rana clan had served as the hereditary prime ministers of Nepal until 1951, with the title Maharaja, and the two clans have a long history of inter-marriages.
According to official accounts, Dipendra was denied his choice of a wife by his mother Aiswarya, and so he massacred his family in a much-publicised incident after indulging in a drinking binge. Among the dead were his father King Birendra, mother, brother, and sister. Dipendra survived comatose for three days, and was proclaimed King in his hospital bed. He died of his injuries on June 4 and was succeeded by his uncle, Prince Gyanendra.
Some people in Nepal suspected that Gyanendra was responsible for the massacre, and that he blamed Dipendra so that he could assume the throne himself. Gyanendra, less popular than his brother Birendra, had been third in line to the throne before the massacre. He was out of town (in Pokhara) during the massacre and was the closest surviving relative of the king. Gyanendra's wife and son were in the room at the royal palace during the massacre. While his son escaped with slight injuries, his wife was injured during the incident.
Recently, a Nepali writer, Ashutosh Shrivastav, in his article published that India and Nepali political parties could jointly have committed this crime. The writer has exposed the Indian expansionism over Nepal. This is a developing story and more news is expected to come.
Feeding the rumours is the allegation that Dipendra was mortally wounded by a gunshot to the left side of the head, while Dipendra was right-handed. Some believe that this casts doubt on whether the injury was self-inflicted.
Despite the fact that several survivors have publicly confirmed that Dipendra was doing the shooting, as was documented in a BBC documentary, many Nepali people still consider it a mystery. Neelesh Misra, who covered the tragedy for The Associated Press, in his book "End of The Line: The Story of the Killing of the Royals in Nepal", offers for the first time the true story behind the massacre. Portrayed in the book is the developing family drama, which culminated in the killings on 1 June 2001. Besides revealing the inside drama, the book traces the sequence of events on that black Friday and answers questions that have puzzled people since. Revealed is the fact that Crown Prince Dipendra had, in any case, decided to marry his beloved, Devyani Rana, regardless of parental opposition. Highlighted too is the bizarre series of omissions on that evening when an entire royal family was wiped out in the close vicinity of its elite guardsmen.
|Last Updated on Saturday, 05 December 2009 09:46|