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DIPENDRA Bir Bikram Shah

 
 
 
 
 

 

 

 

 


The Nepalese royal massacre
 
Classification: Mass murderer
Characteristics: Parricide - Anger over a marriage dispute
Number of victims: 9
Date of murders: June 1, 2001
Date of birth: June 27, 1971
Victims profile: King Birendra (father) / Queen Aiswarya (mother) / Prince Nirajan (brother) / Princess Shruti (sister) / Dhirendra (King Birendra's brother who had renounced his title) / Princess Jayanti (King Birendra's cousin) / Princess Shanti (King Birendra's sister) / Princess Sharada (King Birendra's sister) / Kumar Khadga (Princess Sharada's husband)
Method of murder: Shooting
Location: Kathmandu, Nepal
Status: Committed suicide by shooting himself the same day. Died whilst in a coma three days later
 
 

 
 
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Dipendra Bir Bikram Shah (27 June 1971 – 4 June 2001) was a member of the Nepalese Royal Family, who briefly became King of Nepal from 1 June to 4 June 2001. As the Crown Prince, he allegedly killed his family at a royal dinner, including the previous King, on 1 June 2001. Dipendra was also mortally wounded by an allegedly 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.

Education

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 for his master's degree at Tribhuvan University and was a PhD student in the same University. He was known to have been skilled in karate.

Motive for murder

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 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 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 4 June and was succeeded by his uncle, Prince Gyanendra.

Other theories

Many people in Nepal still believe that Gyanendra was responsible for the massacre, and that he blamed Dipendra so that he could assume the throne himself.

Many suspected this as no one from Gyanendra's family was killed while everyone from Birendra's family was killed. 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.

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.

Wikipedia.org


The Nepalese royal massacre occurred on Friday, June 1, 2001, at the Narayanhity Royal Palace, then the residence of the Nepalese monarchy, when Crown Prince Dipendra allegedly shot and killed several members of his family. As a result of the shooting, ten people died and five were wounded. The dead included King Birendra of Nepal and Queen Aiswarya, Dipendra's father and mother. Prince Dipendra became de jure King of Nepal upon his father's death and died whilst in a coma three days later.

Overview of events

According to reports, 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 an 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 shooting, 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.

Other theories

Some people in Nepal suspected that Gyanendra was responsible for the royal palace massacre on June 1, 2001, and that he had blamed Dipendra so that he could assume the throne himself. Gyanendra, not as popular in the country as his son Paras, 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.

Feeding the rumor 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 two 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. Recently, a book was published in Nepal named Raktakunda recounting the massacre. It looks at the incident through the eyes of one of the surviving witnesses, Queen Mother Ratna's personal maid, identified in the book as Shanta. The book, which the author says is a "historical novel", posits that two men masked as Crown Prince Dipendra fired the shots that led to the massacre. Shanta's husband, Trilochan Acharya, also a royal palace employee, was killed along with 10 royal family members, including the entire family of King Birendra. In addition to details of the royal massacre, Shanta alleged many other cover-ups by the royal family, including a claim that then-King Mahendra committed suicide.

Aftermath

Dipendra was proclaimed King while in a coma, but he died on June 4, 2001, after a three-day reign. Gyanendra was then appointed regent.

While Dipendra lived, Gyanendra maintained that the deaths were the result of an "accident". However, he later said that he made this claim due to "legal and constitutional hurdles", since under the constitution, and by tradition, Dipendra could not have been charged with murder had he survived. A full investigation took place, and Crown Prince Dipendra was found to be responsible for the killing. Numerous conspiracy theories suggest an alternate conclusion, but there is little evidence to support them.

The widely accepted motive is that Prince Dipendra was angry over a marriage dispute. Dipendra's choice of bride was Devyani Rana, daughter of Pashupati SJB Rana, a member of the Rana clan, against whom the Shah dynasty have a historic animosity. 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. All linked Dipendra's actions to a clash with his mother over his wish to marry Devyani Rana. It is also alleged that he had problems with both drugs and alcohol and, despite his affable public persona, had a cruel side to his personality.

A two-man committee comprising Keshav Prasad Upadhaya, the then-Supreme Court Chief Justice, and Taranath Ranabhat, the then-Speaker of the House of Representatives, carried out the week-long investigation into the massacre. The investigation concluded, after interviewing more than a hundred people including eyewitnesses and palace officials, guards and staff, that Dipendra had carried out the massacre. Some critics both inside Nepal and abroad disputed the official report.

Victims of the massacre

Killed

  • HM King Birendra, father

  • HM Queen Aiswarya, mother

  • HRH Prince (later HM King) Dipendra, alleged perpetrator (suicide)

  • HRH Prince Nirajan, brother

  • HRH Princess Shruti, sister

  • (HRH Prince) Dhirendra, King Birendra's brother who had renounced his title

  • HRH Princess Jayanti, King Birendra's cousin

  • HRH Princess Shanti, King Birendra's sister

  • HRH Princess Sharada, King Birendra's sister

  • Kumar Khadga, Princess Sharada's husband

Wounded

  • HRH Princess Shova, King Birendra's sister

  • Kumar Gorakh, Princess Shruti's husband

  • HRH Princess Komal, Prince (now former King) Gyanendra's wife and former Queen

  • Ketaki Chester, King Birendra's cousin

  • HRH Prince Paras, Crown Prince, son of Gyanendra

Wikipedia.org


Timeline - Nepal - Reports

Manitara.com

Eye Witness

Dipendra did it. Two weeks after the mass murder of Nepal’s royal family, a high-level official inquiry has concluded that Crown Prince Dipendra killed his father, mother, brother, sister, uncle, and three aunts in cold blood before shooting himself. Six other members of the royal family, including Queen Komal were seriously injured in the Friday night massacre and are still in hospital.Most details confirm early media reports about a drugged and drunk prince going berserk with automatic weapons, mowing down family members.

Eyewitness speaks

The first eyewitness of the 1 June massacre at the Royal Palace has spoken. Captain Dr Rajeev Raj Shahi, son-in-law of the late king Birendra’s youngest brother Dhirendra who died in hospital, provided a near blow-by-blow account of the family gathering. According to him it took late King Dipendra about a minute and half to massacre almost an entire royal clan.

Shahi sketched out the scene and described how the intoxicated prince was escorted out of the hall where the family was holding a party. He returned with an assault rifle and shot ten royal family members.

1. Crown Prince Dipendra enters and shoots the king, then runs out.
2. Crown prince returns and shoots Prince Dhirendra then goes out again.
3. Princess Shruti moves towards the king and the crown prince shoots her, another princess and the king again.
4. Dipendra turns and fires at three relatives. In the garden he shoots Prince Nirajan in the back and then the queen.
5. The crown prince shoots himself in the head on the footbridge.

“I was hit. Sruti cradled me.Then Dipendra came and shot her.” - Kumar Gorakh

The details are so horrific and gory that reading it is not for the faint-hearted. The 300+ page report is made up mostly of raw unedited testimonies from eyewitnesses, medical personnel and security staff. Some of the accounts are rambling and confused, others are contradictory. The royal relatives who were in the Tribhuvan Room were interviewed less than a week after the massacre. Many said they could not recall exact details because things happened so fast, and also because of the shock and grief.

There are unconfirmed details: did the fatally wounded King Birendra try to reach for a gun that Dipendra threw? Was the person in the red sari seen by a waiter running into the garden Queen Aishwarya? How many times did Dipendra go out of the room, and why? Where exactly were the ADC’s during the whole episode? How long did the shooting last? Any eyewitnesses to Dipendra’s suicide? Why wasn’t the queen mother interviewed?

There is inconsistency in the exact timing of various events. There are differences in the recollections of eyewitnesses, but none of them have any doubts about who did it.

The Nepali public has an image of Dipendra which is a composite of what the palace wanted us to know. But family members are now coming out with hush-hush stories about Dipendra’s past behaviour: an easy-going and pampered crown prince used to getting what he wanted, his gun fetish, his previous shooting sprees, his violent outbursts in which Princess Sruti and other relatives and friends had been victims, his frequent drink and drug-induced rage. One bout of viciousness was on his birthday almost exactly a year ago. Dipendra carried his MP-5 submachine guns wherever he went. Palace officials were used to him frequently blazing away at crows, cats and bats in the palace grounds. In fact, when the first shots were fired, sources told us the Queen Mother remarked: “There he goes shooting cats again.” - The following is an unofficial translation by Nepali Times of excerpts from the commission’s transcripts of eyewitness testimonies:

Queen Komal: “I was present at the family gathering at Tribhuvan Sadan that day. I learnt that the crown prince had gone to rest early. Sometime later there was a burst of gunfire and the bullets hit the ceiling. After that I saw that King Birendra had been hit on the right side of his neck. Kumar Khadga and Kumar Gorakh were also shot. Then I was hit in the back and I fell down… (Princess) Shanti had fallen over me, and I could not see anything after that.”

Princess Helen Shah (King Birendra’s aunt): (She was sitting with the Queen Mother in the anteroom, heard gunshots and some people running in the garden. She thought the youngsters were playing. In the end she heard one or two shots. Then there was silence.) “About 7-8 minutes after that Paras came running (and told us). After hearing that ‘Amumuma dai-le ta Thulobuba dekhi liyara sabai jana lai goli hanyo’ (Dipendra shot King Birendra and all the others), I opened the door and stepped out. The Queen Mother was behind me…I then entered the Billiard Room…and looked all around. Everyone was on the ground. Dhirendra was crying in pain. I rushed back to the Queen Mother and told her everyone except Dhirendra were dead. She asked where is the king. Paras said I have sent him to hospital already. Then she asked where were the queen and Nirajan. At that time the two stepped out. The Queen was in front and Nirajan was following…I don’t know where. Then we went to hospital.”

Princess Shoba Shahi: “It was our normal Third Friday gathering. No argument, no discussion it was just a gathering. He (Dipendra) had served drinks and then gone to fetch Mummy (Queen Mother)…After chatting with our mothers we all drifted towards the Billiard Room. The crown prince was not there. Dhirendra told me that four people had taken him (Dipendra) to his room. Then we entered the Billiard Room. A while later, he (Dipendra) appeared in combat clothes (sobs), he had a big gun. He did not talk, all of us were there, and there was the sound of gunshots…We did not think that he intended to kill, we thought the gun had gone off by mistake. Birendra dai fell. I went and held him. Rajeev also came and helped. I couldn’t tell where he was hit… Birendra dai tried to get up. And he was holding a… I said leave this and snatched it. The magazine came out and I threw it away. Sometime later there was a bang, Sani diju (Princess Shanti) came running in. There was a shot from outside and my maili bhauju (middle sister-in-law, Queen Komal) fell, then I saw that Gorakh had been hit. He (Dipendra) was still coming in and Dhirendra said ‘Babu, that’s enough’. He had just finished saying that when he was shot. Immediately after Dai (King Birendra) fell, Sruti came saying “Bua, Buba”, but seeing her husband she said “Eh ba timilai pani lagyo?” (You have also been hit?”) and rushed towards him….Then she fell. After shooting bhai (Dhirendra) he shot his sister. After that he shot His Majesty again and he fell…actually he killed him that third time.”

Prince Paras: “We reached there a little after 7:30, about 7:40. Everyone else had come. Mummy, myself, sister and Himani (wife) were a little late. The Crown Prince appeared like he had already had some cocktails. (He asked) what would you like? I decided to have just a Coke. ‘I have been drinking whiskey,’ he said. He was ok until that time, but seemed intoxicated. (When I asked) what happened he said: ‘We’ve been discussing marriage. I spoke with mua (his mother) and with Afumuma (Queen Mother), both have said no.’ This was about eight o’clock.

At around eight the Queen Mother came, (Dipendra had fetched her)…again he served drinks, then at about 8:30 His Majesty arrived. At that time Dai (Dipendra) was with us inside, in the room where the incident took place. He seemed drunk and fell, as if he had passed out and was down on the floor. Gorkah, Nirajan, Rajeev and myself picked him up and told him we were taking him to his room because Thulobuba had already come. We took him up but did not put him in bed, we put him down on a floor mattress. At around 8:31-32 we turned off the lights and came down. His Majesty spent about half-an-hour with the Queen Mother. Then he came to the room where the incident took place. The king had just taken a drink. We had not even said cheers, we were in a corner and did not see the crown prince coming… that’s the corner where we usually stayed, we youngs (sic) used to stay there so (the elders) didn’t see us smoking. I did not see him coming, I only came to know he had come when the first shot was fired. He fired three rounds as he came in, His Majesty had just asked ‘What are you doing?’ Bang, bang, he was hit here and here (pointing). His Majesty fell. Dr Rajeev and I were together. Both of us rushed to him. Dr Rajeev reached His Majesty, but I was stopped by Princess Shoba. I went back and told the sisters to take cover and lie low. At about this time the Crown Prince came in again. I saw him shoot at His Majesty. I saw him shoot Dhirendra. When he was returning the second time Dhirendra said ‘Baba, you have done enough damage’. No sooner had he said that, than bang-bang one hit him here (pointing). Then he fell, and after that it was one after another, I cannot recall. I had already turned back and was helping the sisters to take cover. I saw His Majesty, Kumar Gorakh and Kumar Khadga fall, more or less at the same time. It was the MP-5 that had hit the three, this was the same MP-5 which His Majesty picked up. Princess Sobha took it away and removed the magazine, and put it down on the floor. Maybe she thought this was the only weapon, but Dai (Dipendra) also had other weapons, I had seen them. One handgun was on his left side the MP-5 was in his right pocket…I did not see what happened outside. He had the shotgun and the M-16 on his shoulders.

He may have gone in and come out within a minute, or perhaps 30 seconds. He came back with the big gun, an M-16, and hit Thulo Buba (King Birendra) in the head, then Kumar Khadga fell. I did not see Sruti come but saw her telling Gorakh, ‘Baba you have been hit.’ Princess Sarada went to where Kumar Khadga had fallen, she lay over his body sobbing “What has happened to you, what has happened to you?” The crown prince came back and shot her at point blank range…when he came for the third time he shot at Jayanti diju, Ketaki…and Sruti. Then he came towards the tall chair, we were directly in front of him. I said ‘What are you doing…what are you doing…please go.’ If he had shot: I was there, Mahesh was there, Rabi was there. I had hidden them there. My sister was behind Mahesh. My wife was there. I had hidden three of the (cousin) sisters there and another one behind what looks like a sofa. To Dai (Dipendra) I said: “Please, what are you doing, we are the only ones here”. One-by-one he looked at us and left. I got up and went to Kanchho Buba (Dhirendra). He told me: “Paras I can’t move my legs, please try to move them.” Then he told me to protect the children, I did not even seen my mother (Queen Komal) fall. She was trying to get up from under Princess Shanti. I went and helped muma get up…then I went to the Queen Mother’s room. I had heard firing outside and thought it came from there, but it was quiet in the room. I told them what had happened. By then the firing had stopped.

Dai’s ADC came saying ‘He shot himself, he shot himself’. I asked him where was Bhai (Nirajan), he said he had been shot. I asked where was Thulo Muma (the Queen) he told me Thulo Muma was down, everyone was down and Thulo Muma had no chance. I did not see what happened…outside Bhai (Dipendra) was lying down groaning in pain.

(Reasons for shooting) I think it was the marriage issue. This disucssion had begun on his last birthday. We discussed who were “against” and who were “with”. Bhai (Nirajan) and I were “with”. We did whatever he said. Rajeev was “with”, Sruti, Gorakh and other sisters were “against”. I think that was the main reason.”

Princess Prerana (Paras’ sister): “…After sometime Dipendra (came) in army dress…first he fired up on the ceiling, then he shot Thulo Buba (King Birendra)…I don’t know who else he shot, I saw all of them on the ground…Daju (Paras) hid us all behind the sofa, we were behind him. I saw Thulo Buba and my uncle (Dhirendra) being hit. I saw the others only after they had fallen.

Princess Sitashma (Dhirendra’s daughter): “We were near the bar. I came in about an hour later Thul Dai (Dipendra) came in an army dress, we stood by just watching, then there was the sound of firing. Paras-da said get down get down and we hid. Then I saw my father going down slowly. Hearing the machine gun we stayed hidden. He (Dipendra) came, looked at us and left. Then I heard what happened outside, we did not see it.”

Princess Dilasha (Dhirendra’s daughter): “We hadn’t even said cheers. We were just talking…then there was automatic gunfire. We were shocked. His Majesty had been shot, he was hit in the neck. I saw that, I also saw him fall down.”

Kumar Gorakh: “I heard gunshots, I thought it was crackers. I didn’t know what was happening, then I saw His Majesty fall. Then everyone started saying “What happened, what have you done?” I ran from the corner to the side where His Majesty was. I looked at him and said he’s been shot, then when I was returning, well…what to say… Dipendra Shah (sobs) came and shot everyone who was there. I was behind a table or something when I was hit and fell to the floor. He was going in and out. The only person with a gun was Dipendra Shah, no one else was there. He returned and picked out those who had been hurt, took aim and shot, took aim and shot…what else is there to say (weeps). He had at least two machine guns. Also perhaps a pistol. I think I saw that much. I don’t know the make of the machine gun. But when he held up the gun there was a flash. I thought this is the end, that was when I was hit. I fell. I could not move. Then my wife (Sruti) came to see what had happened to father. I said: ‘Baba, malai pani dagyo’ (I have also been hit). She took me in her lap, then he came and shot her. Both of us fell there and others came and took us to hospital.”

Rabi Sumshere Rana (Married to King Birendra’s aunt): “…His Majesty had taken a Coca-Cola and moved towards the billiard table, I was two or three steps behind and he called me. I moved forward and he asked how I was. I said everything was fine and then Mahesh Kumar entered and said his wife could not come because of arthritis. His Majesty moved forward and said that gout, uric acid, cholesterol were in the family. Before he had finished talking about cholesterol, Mahesh Kumar left and another man came (towards us). Not army uniform, that dress is known as a fatigue, I looked closely and I noticed it was the Crown Prince. I thought he looked at me and I think he smiled. Then there was a burst of three shots. What to do. His Majesty just stood and watched, I just stood there watching. I knew he was a happy-go-lucky person, but this was no way to fool around. Then I saw blood gushing out of king’s side. I yelled: “Doctor!”. ... the King said ‘What have you done?’ He (Dipendra) had bolted out of the room. Then, in utter panic, I screamed for an ambulance...”

Maheswor Kumar Singh (married to King Birendra’s aunt): “…When I arrived the Crown Prince was already there. He was playing billiards on his own. He asked me to take a drink. He was manning the bar himself... I took a drink and parked it on a table. It was about 7:30-7:45, and he (Dipendra) went out. His Majesty the King was not there yet. So we went to greet the Queen Mother, and Her Majesty the Queen was also there. We were chatting when His Majesty arrived at about 8:30, and then I stepped out. After about 10-15 minutes His Majesty...went to the Billiard Room.

He (the king) had a drink in his hand…I went up and told him my wife could not come and were talking about health, ...(at about) 8:50-8:55. I heard a sound from behind and turned back. I saw the Crown Prince in complete battle dress, cap, an automatic weapon could be clearly seen in his hands. About one or two seconds later there were two sounds. I thought it was from the TV. It was very near my ears and thought my eardrums had burst, I blinked. I turned to see what was happening…Rajeev Shahi was already running towards us and stood behind King Birendra trying to support him. …I think I saw the queen rushing out…”

Ketaki Chester (Prince Basundhara’s daughter): “I saw him (Dipendra) coming in from the main door in combat uniform carrying two machine guns…I did not think they were real. My sister (Jayanti) was near me and I said, “Isn’t he too old to come in a uniform in front of other people?” My sister is now dead. She said, I don’t know. Then I thought he was bringing the weapons to show them to His Majesty. He walked straight into the room and stood about 10 feet away from His Majesty then I heard a bang. I did not think it was a gunshot. The gun in his right hand was aimed upwards. Then I smelt something and told my sister this could be ammunition. He turned and headed out, we stepped forward and saw that His Majesty had been hit and he was falling down slowly…later I saw Her Majesty marching out of the door, I called out to her twice. I heard the machine gun fire twice and told Dhirendra whom I was holding: ‘He may have shot Her Majesty’…when Her Majesty ran out, ..., I saw Nirajan running after her…”

Capt Rajeev Shahi (husband of Dhirendra’s daughter): ”I heard that His Majesty had been shot. By the time he had already fallen. I opened the coat and pressed the right side of his neck (to stop the bleeding). The king said “Rajeev, I’ve also been hit in my stomach”…I had not seen the Crown Prince until then because he had run out. Then he came back in. Dhirendra Shah had tried to stop him saying ‘Baba what are you doing?’ and he was shot.”

Colonel Sunder Pratap Rana (ADC to His Majesty the King who was 40 or 50 m away from the scene of the crime): “The time was…after nine, after nine. There was a sound of the cupboard moving. I said what was happening and Major Gajendra (Bohra, Dipendra’s ADC) stepped out. As soon as he stepped out, I heard gunshots and Her Majesty’s, a woman’s voice saying ‘call the doctor.’ I tried to call the doctor on my mobile, and could not. Then I ordered for the fighting force and moved forward. There was another round of firing. I kept moving forward. Inside the hall I saw people on the ground, but could not make out where who was. I was running from outside and looking inside… I found the His Majesty in a group and felt if I carried His Majesty and went back the same way the same man who had shot him could attack us, so I ordered that the door be broken. We checked his airways, bleeding and circulation, His Majesty had survive(d) the attack. We then put him in a car and left for the hospital.”

Major Ananta Keshar Shima (ADC to Her Majesty, who was also in the nearby office): “A woman’s voice had ordered us to call a doctor, it could have been Sruti’s or Her Majesty’s voice. Then I tried to call a doctor from the office telephone. After failing to get through to the army hospital and doctor I went towards where the firing had come from. By the time the door had been broken. I helped the colonel carry His Majesty out and after the car left, I went back to call the doctor again and ordered more vehicles…I looked around for Her Majesty and not finding her in the room I came back to the ADC room and called the nanny in her quarters. The nanny told me Her Majesty had not returned so I went out towards the garden, where I met Major Gajendra. As we went forward we saw a body near a bend. It was groaning, coming up close I recognised the Crown Prince and ordered the people with me to take him away. Then while I was turning around, I saw Prince Nirajan flat (sic)… and sent him to hospital.” Because I had not yet found Her Majesty I went in…I saw something red on the side of the door, I ran up the stairs and there was Her Majesty. Because I could not carry her on my own I called the military police, put her in a car and took her to hospital.”

Major Gajendra Bohara (ADC to Dipendra, also in the ADC office at the time): “I was working on the computer when Sunder Pratap said what happened? I stepped out and then heard the sound of firing, and said “sir I can hear shots.” I went straight ahead and reached the broken door. From there my eyes went to the entrance door. I saw the crown prince step out and pulled at the door (broken one). I knew the door would be locked from the inside, then I ran around and peeped but I could not see anything, then I turned back. At that time I saw another ADC coming and moved forward—slowly—because I had seen firearms. My aim was to protect the crown prince…by the time the colonel had entered the room, and I also saw that inside all had fallen…All had fallen but at the time I did not even think that the crown prince had shot himself, I was only thinking of how to get him under control, if nothing had happened to him it would take much time to control him, so we were looking around slowly. Then we heard a sound from the stairs leading to the garden. It was a loud groaning noise, the groaning was there till we had reached the hospital. Following the noise we found the crown prince and brought him out…”

Captain Chakra Shah (ADC to the Queen Mother): “…After hearing ‘call the doctor, call the doctor’ we ran towards (the room). I was on duty in the area for the first time so I did not know where the entrance was…I tried to open the door, others broke the door and stepped in, later I followed. They had covered His Majesty and because my responsibility was the Queen Mother, I began to look for her…I searched for the Queen Mother among the female corpses but did not find her…then I came out from another window…then I didn’t know where she was coming from, she called me ‘Chakra…”

Captain Pawan Khatri: (ADC His Majesty the king, in the duty room after the king went to Tribhuvan room from his office): “We were chatting when there was a bang, bang sound from outside. We had just stepped out when we heard loud firing. Then we heard ‘call the doctor’ from inside. The Colonel was on the phone, on the set I called for the military police and ran forward…when I reached near (the room), I saw a man in combat fatigue leave from the back door, in the garden-side door with a gun whose light was on, the gun was facing this side (sic) and the person was about to turn. The light on the gun was still on. I stood outside and had my pistol in my hands, after that I went to support Colonel Sunder Pratap.”

Santa Bahadur Khadka, Kitchen Boy: “…The Crown Prince was moving backwards with guns in two hands, he was moving backwards and the (woman in red) was in front of him, we could not recognise her… The two were not talking, they were running, shouting, screaming. I cannot say who was speaking. The women in the room were screaming.”

Bacchuram KC, Kitchen boy: “I had gone inside (the room) with cold drinks about two minutes before the incident. After I had come about 10 metres north from the door of the room, the Crown Prince came in army dress. He had a gun in front. I thought he may be going out somewhere. The firing started the moment (he entered) the room, then I became scared, my heart began pounding, I ran away. …I had seen (guns) in two of his hands, one was big, another small…He was in a scary position…. Seeing him with weapons, I was scared, my heart skipped a beat (mutu chaskiyo), still I stood by and watched where he was heading. But after he went in and I heard the loud noise, there was no point for me to stay there.


Royal News

NettyRoyal.nl

June 1st

Princess Madeleine of Sweden graduated from high school at the Enskilda Gymnasiet in Stockholm. When she came out of the school her parents, Crown Princess Victoria and Princess Lilian were waiting for her.

June 2nd

At about 22:40 local time yesterday evening 29-year-old Crown Prince Dipendra has shot dead at least 8 members of his family with two automatic rifles in a sitting room at the Palace Narayan Hity in the capital Kathmandu after a dinner and afterwards committed suicide in the temple by shooting a bullet through his head. At the hospital, the Crown Prince had a feeble pulse, but the 9 mm bullet had gone right through his head. Surgeons operated on him. According to the Nepali Times Crown Prince Dipendra was left brain-dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound in hospital early this morning and is only kept alive with a life support machine. Shocked palace staff rushed the dead and wounded to the Royal Nepal Army Hospital in Chauni, where most were declared dead on arrival. The deaths are King Birendra (55) and Queen Aishawarya (51), their son Prince Nirajan (22), their daughter Princess Shruti (24, died in the hospital), King Birendra's sisters Princesses Sharada and Shanti (60, died in hospital), the King's cousin Jayanti and his brother-in-law Kumar Khadga Bikram Shah. Other members of the royal family, Prince Dhirendra and Princess Sruti’s husband Gorakh, were critically wounded. According to reports the royal family had gathered Friday night for a large family meeting to discuss the Crown Prince's marriage and said the crown prince wished to marry the daughter of a former government minister but the queen had objected. The number of death has not yet been confirmed. King Birendra reigned Nepal since 1972. Prince Gyanendra (53), King Birendra’s middle brother, was in Pokhara and tried to fly back, but the Super Puma helicopter sent to fetch him at midnight Friday had to turn back due to bad weather. He finally flew in from Gajuri at six in the morning and landed at Chhauni where the 11-member Royal Privy Council was about to meet. The Raj Parishad is expected to deliberate on the succession and announce the new king later Saturday. Meanwhile, in the city Kathmandu residents gathered in small groups at street corners. Near the Royal palace, by mid-morning a quiet mass of about 10,000 grim-faced people had come together to find out what had happened to their king and queen.

In the afternoon Crown Prince Dipendra was declared the new King of Nepal by the Raj Parishad, the privy council of Nepal. A five-day period of national mourning was declared.

The bodies of King Birendra, his daughter Shruti and son Nirajan, on simple bamboo poles, and Queen Aishawarya on a bronze palanquin, were carried eight miles on the shoulders of Brahmin priests clad in white vests and loin cloths through Kathmandu to the Pashupatinath Temple at the side of the Bagmati River, while armed troops lined the streets and tens of thousands of Nepalis followed the funeral procession. "Long live our king. Our king and our nation are dearer to us than our lives," shouted people that followed the funeral procession, led by Prince Gyanendra, dressed in military white. As darkness fell Hindu priests prepared the bodied for cremation inside tents and wrapped them in red cloth. They were laid on stone pyres decked with garlands of marigolds and sandalwood. One by one, the pyres were lit with torches (the king at 21:46 local time) as dignitaries looked on and a military honor guard saluted. Their ashes are to be scattered along the holy river.

Public prosecutors in Germany have charged Prince Ernst August of Hannover with insulting and attacki photographer Sabine Breuer at an arts festival in Austria last summer. He is accused of insulting her before kicking her in the thigh. He could be fined $ 400,000. He has disputed the charges and his lawyers have filed an objection to the prosecution. The prince will now attend a verbal negotiation before the court case which will be held in the town of Springe near Hannover.

June 3rd

Prince Claus of the Netherlands has left the hospital Barmbek in Hamburg, Germany. He is back home at Palace Huis ten Bosch.

The woman King Dipendra of Nepal wanted to marry has been named as Devyani Rana. Her father, Pashupati Rana, is a former minister, and her mother, Usharaje, was a daughter of the last Maharaja of Gwalior, India. The Rana family ruled Nepal until 1951. At the time of the royal massacre Devyani Rana seems to have been in India to attend the cremation of a family member. Masses of Nepalese people are having their heads shaved as a mark of respect to their murdered royal family. Having your head shaved is a traditional Hindu way of showing the state of personal mourning. The people of Nepal can't believe King Dipendra killed his family members. They think of a plot from his uncle Gyanendra, whose son is the only member of the family at the palace who survived unwounded. This son, Paras, is widely described as a violent and dangerous man, who has shot several people dead in brawls. Prince Gyanendra issued a statement on Sunday that only served to confuse matters by saying the royal killings were the result of "accidental" automatic weapons fire at the palace. He said the victims were seriously injured and later died in hospital. The three injured family members - Gorakh Bikram, Princess Shruti's husband; Komal Shah, Prince Gyanendra's wife; and Prince Dhirendra, the king's youngest brother - remain at the military hospital, where they are in stable condition. Meanwhile, the body of Bodh Kumari Shah, mother of Kumar Khadga Bikram Shah, husband of Princess Sharada, both of whom were killed on Friday in the palace, was cremated today at the Aryaghat in Pashupatinath Temple. She had suffered a massive heart attack after learning the news of her son and daughter-in-law’s death, said family sources. The last rites of Kumar Khadga Bikram Shah and Princesses Sharada and Shanti were also performed early today at the Aryaghat with due honours and rituals.

June 4th

King Dipendra of Nepal died at 3:45 local time in the military hospital in Chhauni, and his uncle Dhirendra, the youngest brother of King Birendra, also died in hospital at 5:57pm. At 10:30 local time, Gyanendra, the younger brother of King Birendra, who had already been named regent for Dipendra, was declared King of Nepal. At 11:00 he appeared at a palace enthronement ceremony in Nasal Chowk in Hanuman Dhoka palace, the former royal palace in the old quarters of Kathmandu, his head shaven in a traditional show of respect for the dead, before he put on the crown topped with a large cream-color plume. It was the second time in history that he was crowned. In November 1950, the then Rana prime minister had made him king at the age of four after King Tribhuvan and King Mahendra secretly left Kathmandu for India to return in February 1951 to restore the House of the Shahs in Nepal. Not counting Gyanendra's brief kingship then, he is the 12th Shah king of Nepal in a dynasty that stretches back to Prithvi Narayan Shah, the unifier of modern Nepal. He rode a horse-drawn carriage to Narayanhiti Royal Palace past cheering crowds as cannons boomed in the air, although thousands of protesters were chanting slogans against the succession of King Gyanendra in different parts of the city. The Nepali people, who worship their King as Lord Vishnu, don't consider Gyanendra a Lord Vishnu at the moment. They suspect Gyanendra of seeking a return to absolute monarchic rule. Later today the Nepalese government has declared a curfew in Kathmandu, covering the funeral of King Dipendra, as thousands of angry mourners demand an explanation to the royal massacre. Police fired on protesters, killing at least two persons and wounded tens of people. The newly crowned King Gyanendra addressed the nation in a short speech at 21:00 local time over state-owned Nepal Television. In the speech, he announced that a three member committee has been formed to investigate the Friday night carnage in the Royal Palace and bring the facts to the public. The committee is to be chaired by Chief Justice Keshav Prasad Upadhyaya. The other two memebers of the committee are to be Tara Nath Ranabhat, the Speaker of the House of Representative (Nepalese Lower House) and Madhav Nepal, the leader of the main opposition. In the speech, he also officially declared his wife, Komal, as the new queen. Dipendra's body was taken through the streets of Kathmandu in an open vehicle to the Pashupati cremation grounds, and at 19:30 local time, a brahmin Achyut Prasad Acharya lit the pyre of the late king. Meanwhile, several injured royal family members have been moved out of intensive care to a VVIP unit at the army hospital in Chhauni, Nepal Television announced Monday morning. King Gyanendra's wife Princess Komal, King Birendra's sister Princess Shoba, late Princess Shruti's husband Kumar Gorakh Rana, and King Birendra's cousin Keytaki Singh have been moved out following improvements to their conditions. Royal Families from all over the world have expressed their sympathy to the surviving members of the Royal Family. They are all very shocked. Several royal families were friends of the murdered King and Queen of Nepal.

Princess Madeleine had a graduation party near Stockholm for about 160 friends.

June 5th

Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands and Willem-Alexander Prince of Oranje started a four-day-visit to Russia. After arriving in Moscow they were received by President Putin at the Cremlin. Queen Beatrix said to hope that the state visit will contribute to the continuance of the good relations between Russia and The Netherlands. Putin also showed his guests around in the Cremlin. In the afternoon Queen Beatrix laid a wreath at the monument for the unknown soldier. In the evening a state banquet was held. Moscow got 10.000 tulip-bulbs as a present from the Netherlands.

The doors of the Royal Palace in Kathmandu have opened to allow an investigation into the fatal shooting of 10 members of the royal family. The third member Madhav Kumar Nepal, leader of the main opposition Communist Party of Nepal, who had agreed to be on the panel, later withdrew after objections from within his party on a procedural issue.

June 6th

Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands visited the Duma where she talked with the chairman and some members of the Russian parliament. She wasn't allowed to have a look in the parliament itself as there was a session going on. Meanwhile Willem-Alexander Prince of Orange opened a photo exhibition about AIDS at the Sacharov Institute. He also met Derk Sauer, a Dutch journalist who set up a press centre in Moscow about ten years ago. In the afternoon Queen and Prince met the Dutch community at the Puschkin Museum.

A Dutch teacher has lodged a complaint against the naturalization of Máxima Zorreguieta. He thinks it is not fair that she didn't have to pass all procedures to get the Dutch nationality, while his own fiancée still is waiting for permission to come to the Netherlands.

A witness claims Nepal's Prince Dipendra served drinks to his family moments before shooting them with a machine gun. The witness, reported to be a member of the Nepal royal family, claims Dipendra mixed one of his cousins a drink, and the assembled relatives chatted as they waited for dinner. At about 9 p.m., Dipendra slipped out of the gathering and then appeared minutes later in combat gear, carrying an Uzi submachine gun and an M16 assault rifle. He is said to have walked into a room where his father, the king, was sitting and shot him with one of the automatic weapons. The witness "could see the king's face with utter astonishment on it". The relative is then quoted as saying that after killing his father, Dipendra sprayed machine-gun and rifle fire through the sitting rooms for 15 minutes. "He said nothing at all throughout the whole episode, and there was no expression whatever on his face," the relative was quoted saying. "He just fired indiscriminately." At one point Dipendra's mother, Queen Aishwarya, and his younger brother, Prince Nirajan, followed him into the garden. "That's when they got shot," the relative said. He said that when Dipendra moved back inside his uncle, Prince Dhirendra, pleaded: "'Put the gun down; you've done enough damage" which is when he was shot. As he lay bleeding, the relative said, Dhirendra urged one of the women who tried to help him to reach into his pocket for a mobile phone to call for outside help, but she was unable to do so because she had been shot in the arm and shoulder. Another woman was shot also. Finally, Dipendra went out to the garden again, and more shots were heard. "That must have been the time he was shooting himself," the relative said. Once the prince stopped firing and the rooms had fallen silent, the relative said, "people got together and there was somebody saying, 'This one's dead, that one's alive.'" The witness's account, given by the relative in a joint interview with The Washington Post and the Times of London, shed no light on what Dipendra was thinking or feeling as he prepared to kill. The witness said that there was no discussion of the prince's wedding plans or romantic life at the Friday night gathering, no arguments overheard between Dipendra and his parents that evening, and no sign before the shootings that anything was wrong. "Why he did it, we may never know, but this is actually what happened," the relative said. "It was a routine Friday night, and it all went wrong." According to the relative of the eyewitness, Paras Shah, the 28-year-old son of the new King Gyanendra, played an important and even heroic role in the evening's events, moving quickly to hide some teenagers behind a sofa as the shootings started and arranging to have army trucks take the wounded survivors to a military hospital because no ambulance was available. However some palace sources told that the crown prince and his mother had sharp words that night over the young woman that Dipendra wanted to marry - Devyani Rana, the daughter of a prominent Nepali businessman and the granddaughter of an Indian maharaja. Witnesses said the king and queen told Dipendra he could marry Devyani Rana but if he did so Nirajan would take his place as crown prince, according to a member of the State Council, who spoke on condition of anonymity.

A commission of four historians who research the murder of the Congolese president Lumumba in 1961 by order of the present Belgian parliament, say the Belgian government Eyskens was involved in the fall of the President in 1960. At the end of 1960 King Baudouin has been told about the agreement between Prime Minister Tschombe of the Congolese Province of Katanga and General Mobutu to have Lumumba killed. Belgium should have paid $ 1.000.000 to get rid of Lumumba, who was anti-Belgium. After the fall of Lumumba they kept on urging to have him arrested and there have been several plans to kill him.

June 7th

In the morning Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands and Willem-Alexander Prince of Oranje left Moscow. They first visited Nizhny Novgorod at the Wolga river where they were offered bread and salt, the traditional welcome present. After laying a wreath at the monument for the victims of World War II they visited an training-institute for journalists that is supported by The Netherlands. Afterwards they left for St Petersburg and there they visited the Hermitage museum. There Queen Beatrix re-opened the Marquee Hall by lightening the lights. The Netherlands gave money for the restoration of the hall.

Prince Achileas Andreas of Greece, the youngest son of Crown Prince Pavlos of Greece and his wife Maria, was christened at the Orthodox St Sophia Cathedral in London. His godparents were Prince Guillaume of Luxembourg, Prince Kardam of Bulgaria, Prince Alexander of Fürstenberg, Infanta Elena of Spain, Princess Rosario of Bulgaria and Veronica Touts. Next to the immediate family the christening was also attended by Queen Sofia of Spain, Prince Ernst August and Princess Caroline of Hannover, Prince Kirill of Bulgaria and model Elle MacPherson.

Dr Rajiv Raj Shahi, the son-in-law of the late Prince Dhirendra and a military doctor, says he watched in horror as Crown Prince Dipendra opened fire. Dr Shahi said that the killings were carried out within a span of 90 seconds, as Dipendra darted in and out of the Billiards Room where the gathering of about two dozen members of the royal family and wealthy friends was being held, killing a few relatives each time. Dr Shahi's account is the first on-the-record witness version of the events since the massacre last Friday night. The doctor escaped bullets by jumping out of the way. He said Dipendra started to appear that he was intoxicated, really drunk. He started to stammer and quarrel. It was a family gathering, so we decided to escort him away. Me, Prince Nirajan and the new king's son, Paras Shah, escorted him to his bedroom. About 9 pm I heard a burst of gunfire. I thought it was somebody playing a prank. There was shouting and I heard someone say, 'His Majesty has been shot'. Being a doctor, I ran toward His Majesty. I took off my coat and pressed it against his neck where he was bleeding. (The king) said: 'I have been shot in the stomach also'. My father-in-law (Prince Dhirendra) tried to stop the then-Crown Prince. He was shot at point-blank range on his chest. Dipendra came in a second time with an assault rifle. He shot three more people, went out again and came back in. By this time, Princess Shruti had moved to near her father. He then shot at Princess Shobha, Princess Shruti and His Majesty again. From what I gathered, Queen Aiswarya went to confront the crown prince with what he had done," Shahi said. Prince Dipendra killed his mother. Prince Nirajan came in the centre to save his mother. He was shot in the back," Shahi said. He said others told him that Crown Prince Dipendra then stood on a footbridge some distance away from where the queen and Nirajan lay dead. This was where the prince shot himself in the head with a pistol.

Without further comments the wedding of Prince Jean of France Duke of Vendôme and Duchess Tatjana of Oldenburg was postponed. The wedding was supposed to take place on September 29 in Chartres, France, and it is said it will now take place in Spring 2002.

Heiligenstedt Castle in the German federal state of Schleswig-Holstein, wasn't auctioned as there was nobody who wanted to buy the castle.

French photographer Jacques Langevin has been placed under judicial investigation for invasion of privacy. He photographed the wreckage of the car in which Diana Princess of Wales was killed in August 1997. The photos were impounded by police soon after the crash.

June 8th

The now 2-member committee has finally begun its inquiry into the Nepalese royal massacre. It is expected the findings from the probe will be submitted on Sunday.

An archive of 260 personal letters from the future King Edward VIII of Great Britain to Freda Dudley-Ward, his first and long-time love, have fetched £34,500 at auction. The collection was bought by Barry Davies for his wife Christine, who co-produced the television programme Edward on Edward. The Prince of Wales, who later chose to abdicate, rather than do without Wallis Simpson, later Duchess of Windsor, met "Fredie" early in 1918. In the letters, he swears never to marry anyone except her, says he wants to die young and declares the monarchy is "out of date".

Nepal's monarchy today disavowed the account of royal witness Army Capt. Rajiv Shahi to the murder of Nepal's king June 1 and said it was launching an investigation into his actions, a move that perplexed and alarmed many Nepalis who have waited anxiously for an explanation of the palace massacre. Shahi who is married to a Nepali princess and was at the royal palace when King Birendra and eight members of his family were gunned down, told journalists Thursday that the king's son, Crown Prince Dipendra, had committed the murders and then killed himself. But today, angry palace officials said they had not known about or approved his statement, and there were unconfirmed reports that Shahi had been detained and may face a court-martial. Although Shahi's public presentation was reported today in the independent Nepali media and by foreign news agencies, the government ordered state-run TV, radio and newspapers not to report it and they obeyed, according to officials at state news outlets. Sources close to several survivors confirmed today that Shahi had acted without palace approval, and they said his account squared with what they had witnessed. The palace's abrupt disavowal of Shahi's statement and the possibility that he may be punished for it have raised concern that the new monarch, King Gyanendra, is trying to quash dissent and assert power over Nepal's elected government. The disavowal also raised concern about a possible split between the army, which was loyal to the late king, and the new monarch. Shahi, an army doctor, could not have addressed the media at the military hospital without approval from his superiors, analysts said. But today, the army published full-page ads in all major newspapers congratulating Gyanendra, the late king's brother, and pledging to serve him loyally. The ads warned that "misleading" information had come out about the murders, and it said the army remained "alert and disciplined" in the face of any threats to national security.

June 9th

On the final day of her Russian state visit Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands visited the Vaganova Ballet Academy and the Pavlovsk Palace in St Petersburg. At the palace, where her ancestor Anna Pavlovna Grand Duchess of Russia, wife of King Willem I of the Netherlands, spent most of her youth, she received a copy of a youth portrait of Grand Duchess Anna Pavlovna. Willem-Alexander Prince of Oranje visited the Medical Military Academy and the juridicial institute Prokuratura. In the afternoon they returned to The Netherlands.

Prince Albert of Monaco, Prince Philippe and Princess Mathilde of Belgium attended the women's Grand Slam tennis final at Roland Garros, Paris, France, in which American Jennifer Capriati beat Belgian Kim Clijsters.

Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands no longer is the patroness of the Dutch Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. The Society finds it improper that hunting as a sport is still allowed at the royal estates and that members of the royal family take part in the hunting themselves.

June 10th

The Duke of Edinburgh celebrated his 80th birthday at Windsor Castle. He attended a thanksgiving service at St George's Chapel, Windsor. During the service the Dean of Windsor praised the Duke's "loyalty, encouragement, inspiration and sheer stickability". The service was followed by a private reception and family lunch at Windsor Castle. Around 500 guests attended the service and reception, including former King Constantinos II of Greece. Fifty royals, including 17 from Germany, attended the lunch at Windsor Castle. Queen Elizabeth II said in her speech she wished her husband a happy birthday and told him that she can't believe he is 80.

20-year-old Filippa Princess zu Sayn-Wittgenstein-Sayn married 35-year-old Italian Vittorio Mazzetti d'Albertis. On Friday the civil wedding took place at the neogothic Sayn Castle. On Saturday the bridal soiree took place there also for which some 200 family members and friends were invited, among them many nobles. The religious wedding took place at the Abbey Church St. Marien in Sayn today. In the afternoon a reception was held in the Castle gardens. The dress of the bride was made in Florence, Italy, and the veil comes from a Russian ancestor of the bride.

A powerful probe commission investigating the massacre at the Royal Palace began its third day of investigations Sunday morning. The two members of the commission have already inspected the site of the shoot-out at the Narayanhiti Royal Palace and interviewed royal survivors and doctors at a hospital where they are undergoing treatment and gathered forensic and other evidence. Today the high-level commission has asked for four more days to finish up its work. Sources said collating testimonies, testing forensic evidence, cross-checking facts, analysing them will take till Thursday, 14 June. The report is then expected to be formally presented to the Royal Palace and then released over the weekend. The Commission members are aided by two supreme court judges and have been working out of the heavily-guarded Parliament Secretariat inside Singha Durbar. Since government offices are closed, no visitors are allowed to enter even the main gate of Singha Durbar.

June 11th

Reza Pahlavi II, Shah in exile of Iran, announced with pain and deep sorrow the tragic passing away of his sister, Princess Leila Pahlavi, after a lenghty illness. Princess Leila was born on March 27th, 1970, as the youngest child of Shah Mohammed Reza and his wife Empress Farah, and died in London, England.

Prince Jean of France, Duke of Vendôme, announced his marriage to Duchess Tatjana von Oldenburg, which was supposed to take place on September 29th in Chartres, France, has been cancelled for personal reasons. Jean and Tatjana have decided to end their engagement. It is rumoured Prince Jean came under pressure from his relatives to avoid marrying a protestant. Prince Jean is known as a very strict Catholic, and Duchess Tatjana is a strict protestant. Although it seems that they agreed to bring their children up in the Catholic faith, there might have been more problems that had to do with religion. The Count of Paris, Jean's father, is quoted by The Times as saying that a marriage is an indissoluble undertaking and a union that will last for a lifetime.

June 12th

Yesterday a police officer guarding Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain accidentally discharged his weapon at Buckingham Palace as it was being checked in at the end of a shift, Scotland Yard said. No-one was hurt and the officer involved will continue to work at the palace, but has been temporarily withdrawn from firearms duty.

The Government Information Service says that Pieter van Vollenhoven, husband of Princess Margriet of the Netherlands, has skin cancer. He will be operated at the Antoni van Leeuwenhoek Hospital on June 21st. Mr. van Vollenhoven has cancelled all his engagements.

June 13th

Princess Leila Pahlavi died at the Leonard Hotel, West End, London. Her body was discovered by staff of the hotel on Sunday evening. Former Empress Farah Pahlavi, Leila's mother, issued a statement in Paris on Monday evening saying the princess died in her sleep and that she had been very depressed for the past few years. Time hadn't healed her wounds, that were caused by the flight from Iran and the death of her father, Shah Mohammed Reza, shortly afterwards. Scotland Yard said a post-mortem examination failed to reveal the cause of death, but there were no suspicious circumstances. Police is now awaiting the results of toxicology reports. They also searched Leila's personal belongings to establish wether she had left a note. Newspapers say she died of a fatal overdose of sleeping tablets. The funeral is expected to take place in Paris.

June 14th

Two weeks after the mass murder of Nepal’s royal family, a high-level official inquiry has concluded that Crown Prince Dipendra killed his father, mother, brother, sister, uncle, and three aunts in cold blood before shooting himself. Six other members of the royal family are still in hospital. The two-member commission led by the Chief Justice Keshab Prasad Upadhaya and the House Speaker Taranath Ranabhat presented the findings to King Gyanendra on Thursday evening. An hour later, Ranabhat presented a summary of the findings live on television and radio at a raucous press conference at the parliament secretariat. Rifles, magazines, cartridges and clothes were on display. Most details confirm early media reports about a drugged and drunk prince going berserk with automatic weapons, mowing down family members.The 200-page report was the outcome of the commission’s extensive interviews with royal survivors in hospital and other eyewitnesses, examination of hospital records, lab analyses, ballistic and forensic evidence. There were more than 60 specialists who helped in the seven-day investigation headquartered in the heavily guarded parliament secretariat. See for a summary of the report at Synopsis of the High Level Committee Report on the Royal Palace Incident.

This afternoon Willem-Alexander Prince of Oranje and his fiancée Máxima Zorreguieta have paid a short visit to Amsterdam. Together with mayor Job Cohen they visited the townhall and the Wester Church. It is possible this will be the locations for their wedding that will take place on February 2nd, 2002.

June 16th

Two days ago the coffin with the late Princess Leila Pahlavi was transferred to Paris where former Empress Farah of Iran, her son Shah-in-exile Reza II Cyrus and his wife Yasmine said goodbye to her, as did her brother Ali Reza and sister Farahnaz. Today Princess Leila was buried at the cemetary of Passy, Paris, next to her maternal grandmother Farideh Diba, who died last December. Among the 3000 mourners who attended the funeral were also royals: Princess Ashraf Pahlavi, former Queen Anne Marie of Greece, Prince Nikolaos of Greece, Vittorio Emanuele of Savoy Prince of Naples and his wife Marina, Emanuele Filiberto of Savoy Prince of Venice, Princess Ira of Fürstenberg, the Duke and Duchess of Orléans and the Count of Evreux.

Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain had to hide under an umbrella when she rode in her carriage to the annual Trooping the Colour parade to celebrate her official birthday. The carriage was followed by the Prince of Wales, Duke of Edinburgh, Duke of Kent and the Princess Royal, who all rode on horses. Another carriage rode the Queen Mother, Earl and Countess of Wessex to the parade. The 2nd Battalion Grenadier Guards marched through inches of rainwater in front of Queen Elizabeth II and about 8000 spectators at the Horse Guards Parade ground. The Queen Mother and several other members of the royal family watched the parade from the shelter of the Duke of Wellington's office overlooking the Horse Guards. The King's Troop Royal Horse Artillery soldiered on with a 41-gun royal salute from nearby Green Park. Unfortunately the weather forced the Royal Air Force to cancel a flypast over Buckingham Palace. After the parade the Queen and other members of the family appeared briefly n the palace balcony.

The Nepalese government has said it will not make any further investigations into Crown Prince Dipendra's motive for killing his family.

June 17th

Prince Carl Philip of Sweden returned home after having spent two months at the marineship HMS Carlskrona. He came on board at Muscat, Oman, on April 28th. His parents and sisters welcomed him. Carl Philip said he was very happy to be at home again, although he loved the time he spent on board.

According to a poll by the Dutch royal tv-program "Van Koninklijke Huize" Máxima Zorreguieta 26% mention her the most popular member of the Royal House of the Netherlands (although according to me she will not be a member until her weddingday). Queen Beatrix finished in second place with 24%, while Princess Margriet got 18% of the votes. With 37% Prince Claus still leads the popular male royals list, followed by Willem-Alexander Prince of Oranje with 30%.

June 18th

The only two-month-old National Movement for Simeon II has won the Bulgarian elections on Sunday with an overwhelming majority. The party won 43,05% of the votes and thus 120 of the 240 seats in the Bulgarian parliament, which was just one seat short of sealing an absolute majority in parliament. The party who has former King Simeon II of Bulgaria, who ruled the county as a boy king between 1943 and 1946, as one of its leaders - although he officially didn't run for parliament - promised to transform Bulgaria in 800 days with a radical liberal reform program to attract foreign investment, slash taxes and root out corruption. The party now will begin negotiations on a coalition government. King Simeon has said that he supports a broad coalition government with those who share his priorities. It is said it is likely that King Simeon remains behind the scene and will choose to remain without an official position. Under Bulgarian law, however, he could become prime minister if he wants.

In Sweden the celebration of the 25th wedding anniversary of King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia started this afternoon with a boat trip at the Mälär lake to the Vikingtown of Birka. The boat trip ended in Mariefred and the guests were walking or driven to their hotels nearby. In the evening a huge ball with the theme renaissance/Middle Ages was held at Gripsholm Castle. The about 120 invited guests wore historical inspired costumes. Among the guests were the Norwegian Royal Family, Queen Margrethe II and Prince Henrik of Denmark (who had arrived with the royal ship the Dannebrog earlier today), Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands, Willem-Alexander Prince of Oranje with his fiancée Máxima Zorreguieta, Prince Constantijn and Princess Laurentien of the Netherlands, Grand Duke Henri and Grand Duchess Maria Teresa of Luxembourg, Felipe Prince of Asturias, Prince Albert of Monaco, Archduke Lorenz of Austria, Princess Benedikte of Denmark with her husband Prince Richard zu Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg, former King Constantine and Queen Anne Marie of Greece. Prince Carl Philip of Sweden was there also, but was hiding for the photographers.

Two photographers cleared of contributing to Princess Diana's death have been placed under investigation on charges of invading the privacy of Dodi Fayed. The case stems from a complaint by Mohamed Al Fayed, Dodi's father, said a lawyer for the photographers. Al Fayed contends the two men invaded his son's privacy when they photographed him on August 31, 1997, the night of the fatal crash. The two photographers, Serge Benhamou and Laszlo Veres, were among nine photographers and one motorcyclist cleared in September 1999 - and on appeal last October - of causing the three deaths. Judge Herve Stephan ruled that alcohol, drugs and excessive speed - all on the part of the driver - had caused the crash, and said that the photographers' behaviour, while severely criticised by witnesses, did not constitute a crime under French law. But Judge Stephan never explored the charge of invading privacy, and the appeals court ruled that the charge should be investigated. The case involves only pictures of Dodi Fayed because of all the victims, his family is the only one that has made the claim.

June 19th

King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia of Sweden visited Trosa. Their guests took the boat from Östra Ågatan and visited the Askö marine laboratory. The visit was a little bit overshadowed by the accident of Máxima Zorreguieta, the fiancée of Willem-Alexander Prince of Oranje. She slipped at the wet rocks and was taken to hospital in Stockholm. She turned out to have broken her leg just above her right ankle. In the evening she, Willem-Alexander and Queen Beatrix returned to the Netherlands by plane, missing the last events of that day. In the late afternoon King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia received a tribute outside the Palace. In the evening a huge final concert took place in the garden of the Drottningholm Palace, for which also the people could buy tickets. About 300 guests were invited. Also King Juan Carlos and Queen Sofia of Spain were attending the gala concert in which Swedish top artists and Spice Girl Mel C. performed.

June 21st

In a moving ceremony at the once notorious Villa Pauly yesterday afternoon, Grand Duke Henri presented his father Grand Duke Jean with the Croix de la Résistance. The order of merit of the Conseil national de la Résistance CNR is normally only given posthumously, but for members of the grandducal family there sometimes was made an exception. Also Grand Duchess Charlotte and her husband Prince Felix once received this order of merit. Grand Duke Jean said that it was a great honour to receive the medal.

June 22nd

This afternoon Willem-Alexander Prince of Oranje and his fiancée Máxima Zorreguieta visited the cabinet council and met the members of the Dutch Cabinet. Prime Minister Wim Kok and Vice-Prime Ministers Els Borst and Annemarie Jorritsma explained to the couple how the cabinet council works. On July 3rd the couple will visit the Senate and the Second Chamber, who on that day meet in the Ridderzaal in The Hague to discuss the Act of Consent for the wedding. Yesterday it was made known that mayor Job Cohen will solemnize the civil wedding of Willem-Alexander and Máxima.

Pieter van Vollenhoven left the Antoni van Leeuwenhoek Hospital in Amsterdam after doctors removed some skin tissue yesterday. The skin tissue will be examined further. Lately it was found out the husband of Princess Margriet of the Netherlands has a kind of skin cancer.

Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain will mark her Golden Jubilee next summer with a three-month-tour of the United Kingdom. There will be visits to all the countries and regions of the United Kingdom between May 1st and August 5th. The focal point of the celebrations will be a four-day holiday weekend from June 1st to June 4th, as was already announced earlier.

June 23rd

Prince Bernhard of Baden married Stephanie Kaul in a religious ceremony at Salem Castle. Yesterday the civil marriage also took place at Salem Castle. One of the witnesses was Marie Louise, Bernhard's elder sister. Among the about 200 guests were Queen Sofia of Spain, King Constantinos of Greece, Grand Duke Jean and Grand Duchess Joséphine-Charlotte of Luxemburg, Prince Guillaume and Princess Sibilla of Luxemburg, Prince Ernst August and Princess Caroline of Hannover, Duke Max Emanuel in Bavaria, Duke Carl of Württemberg and Landgrave Moritz of Hessen. After the wedding the couple left for a short honeymoon. The destination remained a secret till the end, even to the bride.

Already yesterday afternoon Grand Duke Henri and Grand Duchess Maria Teresa of Luxemburg visited the town of Esch where they were received by many enthusiastic people. Back in Luxemburg City the festal changing of the guards in front of the grand-ducal palace took place. There was lots of music in the streets the whole evening. At 22:00 a torch-light procession to the Place Guillaume and thereafter also a military parade took place, the last also passed the stand with the grand-ducal family. The evening ended with the traditional huge fireworks above the city. This morning a military parade in presence of Grand Duke Henri was held and the new banner of the Luxemburg army with the monogram of Grand Duke Henri was shown. Afterwards the Grand Duke, Grand Duchess and their children Alexandra and Sébastien attended the "Te Deum" at the cathedral of Our Lady. Concerts and animation went on in the streets until the evening.

Máxima Zorreguieta had surgery on her right ankle this morning at the Haagse Rode Kruis Hospital after an examination showed the ankle was broken on two places. A metal plate was attached to her ankle with screws. Most likely the plaster around the ankle can be removed in eight weeks. In the afternoon she returned to Palace Huis ten Bosch, where she lives at the moment.

June 25th

The King of Swaziland has declared a state of emergency that allows him to jail people who make fun of him. It also eliminates bail for many crimes and prevents newspapers from challenging publishing bans. The government of King Mswati III issued the decree without giving an explanation for the move. King Mswati III has come under increasing criticism over the past year for his authoritarian rule and muzzling of the press.

June 26th

300 Years after the start of the building of the New Palace in Schleissheim near München, Germany, the palace can be seen in its full glory again. After restoration the splendid residence of Elector Max Emanuel of Bavaria can be visited again.

Knud Count Holstein-Ledreborg, husband of Princess Marie Gabrielle of Luxembourg (a sister of Grand Duke Jean), died yesterday evening after a period of illness at the age of 81. The burial service is scheduled for June 30th at the chapel of the Ledreborg Castle. Until 1990, when he handed over the family estate to his daughter Silvia, he was the owner of one of Denmark’s most beautiful and famous castles, Ledreborg.

Some of the most splendid pieces of art from the princely collections of Liechtenstein will return to Vienna, Austria, after 58 years. They will be shown at a private museum at the baroque Liechtenstein Garden Palace in Vienna from Easter 2003. At the beginning of 1945 the collection was transferred to Vaduz Castle Liechtenstein because of the danger at the end of World War II. Since they were only shown at two exhibitions.

Willem-Alexander Prince of Oranje has been interviewed about the Srebrenica-drama by the Dutch Institute for War Documentation. It is said he was interviewed because he visited the Dutch troops (Dutchbat) in Zagreb, Croatia, just before and after the drama that took place in 1995 and has been talking to soldiers at that time. The Institute researches the fall of Srebrenica in which thousands of Muslims were killed by the Serbians when they occupied the town. The Dutchbat, working for the United Nations, were in Srebrenica to protect the town for the Serbs.

The Prince of Wales and Camilla Parker Bowles kissed eachother in public for the very first time. Camilla Parker Bowles officially received the Prince as he arrived at a charity reception at London's Somerset House. The Prince kissed her on both cheeks.

June 27th

About 2100 veteran military men and former members of the Dutch resistance paid a tribute to Prince Bernhard of the Netherlands in the garden of Soestdijk Palace, on the occasion of his 90th birthday on June 29th. From a jeep the Prince inspected them. Also Willem-Alexander Prince of Oranje was present. Prince Bernhard told he said five years ago that he hoped to make it to this year's tribute and is happy he really made it. He has told his doctors he wants to go on another five years and that he thinks they want to help him with that.

June 28th

The Government Information Service says in the skin tissue from Pieter van Vollenhoven that was removed one week ago no spread of cancer cells was found. The doctors call the prognosis hopeful.

Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain spent £ 3m less of taxpayers's money in 2000/01 than in the previous year, the Royal Family's first-ever annual spending review shows. The Queen spent £ 35m of tax income during the period. The large reduction mainly reflected a cut in travel expenditure from £ 8,6m to £ 5,4m since the 1999-2000 period.

Queen Modjadji V of the Bolobedu, born in the forests of Ga-Modjadji, South Africa, died in hospital in Pietersburg today, aged 64. She succeeded her mother as the Rain Queen in 1982. She belonged to a dynasty of female rulers (modjadji) who were entrusted with the knowledge of the secret rituals of rainmaking. The matriarchal dynasty commanded respect among even its more martial neighbours, the Zulus and the Swazis. Queen Modjadji V had two daughters, but none of them survived their mother.

June 29th

Her personal secretary announced that Princess Margarita de Bourbon de Parma, eldest daughter of the Duke of Parma and Princess Irene of the Netherlands, and her boyfriend Edwin de Roy van Zuydewijn got married in a civil ceremony in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, on June 19th. The wedding was attended by members of their families and some friends. The religious wedding will take place later this year, but a date hasn't been revealed yet.

In a television interview on the occasion of his 90th birthday Prince Bernhard of the Netherlands says he hopes to live another five year. He has still so much to do and he wants to finish things. He has an enormous desire to survive. He admits he is probably the only Dutch who likes to go to hospital, because he knows they treat him well and he gets a few days rest. He still likes to work and thinks he would become crazy if he couldn't work anymore. However he says he is not afraid of the death. About his wife Princess Juliana, he said that there is taken care of her 24 hours a day by two women. The doctor visits her regularly. She watches television a lot and sometimes goes out. The last time she was doing allright was during the journey to Africa with children and grandchildren on their 60th wedding anniversary. After she broke her hip, it all went worse quickly. Her memory is 'zero' and sometimes she doesn't recognise people anymore. He further talked about the Lockheed affair and says he has a clean conscience. He did something with the best intentions and did something very stupid, which was quite naief.

A £ 3m fountain in memory of Diana Princess of Wales is to be built in Hyde Park, the British government has announced. The fountain is due to be completed by the summer of 2003, after a design competition open to water engineers, architects, artists and ecologists. It will not include a statue or any figurative representation of the late Princess. The fountain will be paid for by public funds, partly met by the sale of official commemorative coins. The site has been chosen after advice from a committee headed by Princess Diana's close friend Rosa Monckton. The group included landscape designers, architects and art experts.

June 30th

Today Princess Arriana zu Hohenlohe-Langenburg (at the photo with her father) married Dixon Boardman, 30 years her senior, at the Roman Catholic Church de la Encarnación in Marbella, Spain. Her dress was designed by Emmanuel Ungaro. Several royals and nobles attended the wedding. Arriana is the daughter of Prince Alfonso and his second wife, actress Jackie Lane.


Synopsis of the High Level Committee Report on the Royal Palace Incident

Unofficial translation taken from Nepal Home Page and the Nepali Times.

NettyRoyal.nl

In the course of collecting facts about the incident that transpired at Narayanhity Royal Palace the night of June l, 200l, the high level committee carried out an observation of the site of the incident, collected physical items and materials and subjected these to scientific tests, and interrogated eye witnesses, those affected by the incident, and royal guards as well as individuals involved in the relief work and doctors involved in the treatment. Besides this, inquiries were made with individuals where this was thought necessary on the basis of facts that came to light from people with whom inquiries were made in the course of the investigations, and necessary records and documents were sent for from places concerned. From investigations made on that basis the following facts have emerged:

l. In keeping with the tradition of regular family gatherings held at Narayanhity Royal Palace on the third Friday of every month, such a gathering was organised on Friday June l, 200l also. His Majesty King Birenda Bir Bikram Shah Dev, Her Majesty Queen Aishwarya Rajya Laxmi Devi Shah, Her Majesty Queen Mother Ratna Rajya Laxmi Devi Shah, His Royal Highness Crown Prince Dipendra Bir Bikram Shah and His Royal Highness Prince Nirajan Bir Bikram Shah were present at the gathering held at the Tribhvan Sadan of Narayanhity Royal Palace as were all the 24 invitees including other members of the royal family and royal relatives, except Her Royal Highness Princess Prekchhya Rajya Laxmi Devi Shah, Kumar Sri Mohan Bahadur Shahi and Raj Kumari Bimala Singh, according to a letter of the principal secretariat of His Majesty the King dated June 8, 200l. The names of the invited guests are given in appendix.

2. His Royal Highness Crown Prince Dipendra Bir Bikram Shah Dev (hereafter HRH the Crown Prince) arrived first at the venue of the gathering at Tribhuvan Sadan at 7.30 pm, it is confirmed by royal ADC Gajenda Bohara and waiters. Thereafter, the other invitees arrived one after another by 8 pm, it is apparent. At 8 pm, HRH the Crown Prince proceeded to Mahendra-Manzil by his car and conveyed Her Majesty the Queen Mother, with himself at the wheel, to Tribhuvan Sadan, the venue of the gathering, it is also apparent. Her Majesty the Queen Mother then remained with Her Royal Highnesss Princess Helen Shaha in the small chamber known as Sano Baithak to the east of the billiard hall. After the royal family members and royal relatives arrived, His Majesty King Birendra Bir Bikram Shah Dev (hereafter HM the King) finally arrived directly at Tribhuvan Sadan on foot from his office around 8.30 pm, had a darshan of Her Majesty the Queen Mother and after some pleasantries proceeded towards the billiard room, it has come to light from eye witnesses to the sequence of events.

3. HRH the Crown Prince at 7.30 pm, played billiards by himself for some time at the billiard room at Tribhuvan Sadan and in the course of that drank one or two pegs of Famous Grouse whisky neat, according to HRH the Crown Prince's ADC Gajendra Bohara and royal relatives Maheshwar Singh and Rabi Shumsher J.B.R.. A little before HM the King arrived at the Tribhuvan Sadan (some l0-l2 minutes before), four individuals including HRH Prince Nirajan, HRH Prince Paras, Kumar Gorakh and Dr Rajeev saw HRH the Crown Prince swaying, unable to hold himself upright, and wondering if it was not the effect of the whisky, they took HRH the Crown Prince to his bed chamber inside Tribhuvan Sadan, it is learnt from eye witnesses.

4. While in the billiard room HRH the Crown Prince had ordered his ADC Gajendra Bohara by mobile phone at 8.l9 pm to fetch cigarettes and Gajendra Bohara, as ordered, brought a special kind of cigarette prepared with a mixture of hashish and another unnamed black substance as per an order to royal orderly Ram Krishan KC, and proceeded to the east door of the billiard hall and entrusted them to HRH Prince Paras, according to the said Ram Krishna. HRH the Crown Prince himself made arrangements for the hashish and the black substance, it was not known from where it could have come, and since about a year ago he had been making such cigarettes, orderly of HRH the Crown Prince Ram Krishna KC said before the committee. Orderly Ram Krishna KC's version has been corroborated by royal ADCs to HRH the Crown Prince Gajendra Bohara and Raju Karki who said before the committee that HRH the Crown Prince used to smoke such cigarettes.

5. According to particulars received from the telecommunications corporation, it is learnt from the documentation there that HRH the Crown Prince talked to Debyani Rana for one minute l4 seconds on his mobile no. 98l02l5l3 at 8.l2 pm on June l, 200l through mobile no. 98l024339 of Usha Rana, and the second time Debyani Rana talked to HRH the Crown Prince for 4 minutes l4 seconds on mobile no. 98l02l5l3l from mobile no. 0l42305l at 9.l9 pm. Finally, at 8.39 HRH the Crown Prince talked to Debyabni Rana for 32 seconds on his mobile no. 98l02l5l3 through mobile no. 98l024339, according to the same particulars. HRH the Crown Prince had close ties with Miss Debyani Rana of Maharajgunj, according to royal ADCs Gajendra Bohara and Raju Karki as well as Supriya Shaha, a friend of HRH the Crown Prince. Debyani's mother and father themselves pointed out in the course of inquiries before the committee that there was contact between HRH the Crown Prince and Debyani Rana. That there was a close relationship between HRH the Crown Prince and herself was confirmed by Devyani Rana herself (in a tape recording of her voice) when questioned by Royal Nepalese Ambassador to India Dr Bhekh Bahadur Thapa as empowered by the committee.

6. Miss Debyani Rana said as matters concerning HRH the Crown Prince were her personal affair she did not want to say anything about them and that at 8.25 pm when the exchanges were taking place with HRH the Crown Prince his speech sounded slurred so further exchange could not take place, adding that "the voice of HRH the Crown Prince was somewhat slurred, is he somewhat unwell? She wondered and phoned HRH the Crown Prince's ADC Gajendra Bohara at his office and Raju Karki at his home urging them to go have a look at the bed chamber".

7. After Miss Debyani Rana phoned ADC gajenda bohara and Raju Karki passed the message to Gajendra Boraha by phone, Ramkrishna KC, orderly to HRH the Crown Prince, and dware ama Jamuna Adhikari, as ordered by Bohara, reached the bed chamber of HRH the Crown Prince whereupon they found HRH the Crown Prince prone on the ground and trying to undo the clothing on the upper part of his body. They helped take off the clothing and after that HRH the Crown Prince proceeded to the bathroom. Jamuna Adhikari also herd retching noises coming from the bathroom and after coming out of the bathroom HRH the Crown Prince ordered them both to go to their respective rooms to sleep, according to the dware ama and orderly Ramkrishna KC.

8. At 8.39 in the evening HRH the Crown Prince talked on his mobile phone no. 98l02l5l3 to Miss Debyani Rana on mobile no 98l024339 for 32 seconds as evident from records at the telecommunications corporation and this has been conceded by Miss Rana adding that HRH the Crown Prince had said "I am now about to sleep", "good night, we'll talk tomorrow".

9. After the phone contact with Miss Debyani Rana, HRH the Crown Prince put on army combat dress and came out of the bed chamber with weapons where he was seen by HRH Crown Prince's orderly Ramkrishna who thought the Crown Prince was about to go out and said "shall the emergency bag be brought sire", whereupon HRH the Crown Prince replied "it's not necessary now", according to orderly Ramkrishna.

10. HRH the Crown Prince in combat fatigues and armed on both sides with rifle and revolver proceeded towards the billiard hall, according to 'boys' Bachuram KC who saw HRH the Crown Prince from the eastern room of the dining hall adjoining the billiard hall.

11. HRH the Crown Prince in combat fatigues entered the billiard hall and fired at the ceiling and west wall with a 9 mm Caliber MP-5K automatic sub-machine gun and then fired rat-tat-tat at His Majesty the King who was then standing near the east end of the billiard table talking to others. All the while HRH the Crown Prince moved back and came out of the billiard room, threw the l2 bore SPAS l2-L FRENCH SPA gun near the stairs to the north of the inner garden edge east of the hall, then entered the billiard room again aiming the 5.56 caliber Colt M-l6 A2 rifle with light and telescope and fired rat-tat-tat again at His Majesty the King, Kumar Gorakh Shumsher Rana, Sri Dhirendra Shah and Kumar Khadga Bikram Shah, then moved back to reach the door, and again advanced to fire indiscriminately a third time hitting HRH Princess Shruti Rajya Laxmi Devi Rana, HRH Princess Sharada Rajya Laxmi Devi Shah, HRH Princess Shanti Rajya Laxmi Rana and HRH Princess Jayanti Shah as well as others. HRH the Crown Prince moved back out of the billiard hall and to the east towards the inner garden, according to HRH Princess Shova, HRH Prince Paras, Kumar Gorakh, Ketaki Chestar, Rabi Shumsher, Dr Rajeev Shahi and Maheshwar Kumar Singh who were present at the site.

12. As HRH the Crown Prince moved back towards the inner garden to the east after firing indiscriminately at the billiard hall a third time, a female figure in red sari was seen giving chase in that direction, as seen by 'boys' Santa Bahadur Khadka among others from the dinning room to the north adjoining the billiard hall, Khadka said. HRH Prince Nirajan followed Her Majesty Queen Aishwarya Rajya Laxmi Devi Shah (hereafter Her Majesty the Queen) via the pathway from the billiard room towards the inner garden to the east to a small convergence point between the pathway from the garden to the bed chamber in Tribhuvan Sadan and the pathway to the shed to the east, according to Mrs Ketaki Chestar among others, and shots were fired from north to south after crossing a ladder there and while standing at the small meadow, going by observation of the site including the state of the empty cartridge shells and bullet marks on the wall to the south. HRH Prince Nirajan was found laying prone in an unconscious state with the head to the east and Major Bishnu Khadka and others carried HRH the Prince and brought him outside, put him in a car and took him to hospital, according to Major Bishnu Khadka among others.

13. According to royal ADCs, after the firing at the billiard hall the royal ADCs sitting in the inner room of the ADC office on the right hand side of the main gate of Tribhuvan Sadan heard the sound of firing and the alarm "call the doctors soon..." and entered the billiard hall by breaking the glass of the door , which is to the south of the hall and always remains closed, to immediately start rescue work from the hall. Royal ADC Colonel Sundar Pratap Rana, among others, entered the hall, carried His Majesty the King, who was unconscious, out to the car and drove to the military hospital, Chhauni, the ADCs said.

14. It was seen during the observation of the site of the incident that brain tissues, a few teeth and jaws, red tika, two ear pins, broken pieces of red glass bangles and blood stains were scattered here and there at the place where Her Majesty the Queen was said to have been lying after indiscriminate firing at Her Majesty at the upper part (seventh) step of the inner staircase leading to the bed chamber of His Royal Highness the Crown Prince, which can be reached after crossing a bridge over a pond, turning to the north and passing through the main gate that leads to the bed chamber upstairs.

15. Major Bishnu Khadka and the royal ADCs, who was involved in the rescue work, also told the committee that His Royal Highness the Crown Prince was found lying on his back and gurgling to the south of the small bridge over the little pond at the garden in front of Tribhuvan Sadan where the bed chamber of His Royal Highness the Crown Prince is situated. During the observation of the site of the incident, a 9mm. caliber Glock Ges. pistol, which His Royal Highness the Crown Prince was said to be in possession of, and empty cartridges discharged from the pistol were found in the water of the pond in the eastern side. Also during the observation a 5.56 caliber M-16 A2 rifle was found on a small lawn to the south of the same place.

16. After the incident at the above mentioned billiard hall, and at the garden to the east of the hall and the staircase leading to the bed chamber, Royal ADCs and other security personnel rushed the victims to Shree Birendra Military Hospital, Chhauni. The committee has received the following information regarding the time they reached the hospital and their condition at that time:

  • (a) His Majesty King Birendra Bir Bikram Shah Dev was pronounced dead upon arrival at Birendra Military Hospital at 9:15 in the evening.

  • (b) Her Majesty Queen Aishwarya Rajya Laxmi Devi Shah was pronounced dead upon arrival at Birendra Military Hospital at 9:15 in the evening

  • (c) His Royal Highness Prince Nirajan Bir Bikram Shah was pronounced dead upon arrival at Birendra Military Hospital at 9:15 in the evening.

  • (d) Her Royal Highness Princess Sruti Rajya Laxmi Devi Rana, who reached Birendra Military Hospital at 9:20 in the evening, was pronounced dead at the hospital at 9:55 the same evening.

  • (e) Her Royal Highness Princess Shanti Rajya Laxmi Devi Singh was pronounced dead upon arrival at Birendra Military Hospital at 9:30 in the evening.

  • (f) Her Royal Highness Princess Sharada Rajya Laxmi Devi Shah was pronounced dead upon arrival at Birendra Military Hospital at 9:30 in the evening.

  • (g) Her Royal Highness Princess Jayanti Rajya Laxmi Shah was pronounced dead upon arrival at Birendra Military Hospital at 9:30 in the evening.

  • (h) Kumar Khadga Bikram Shah was pronounced dead upon arrival at Birendra Military Hospital at 9:35 in the evening.

  • (i) His Royal Highness Crown Prince Dipendra Bir Bikram Shah Dev, who reached Birendra Military Hospital at 9:24 P.M. on June 1, 2001, was pronounced dead at 3:45 A.M. at the hospital on June 4, 2001.

  • (j) Mr. Dhirendra shah, who reached Birendra Military Hospital at 9:24 P.M. on June 1, 2001, was pronounced dead at 5:57 P.M. at the hospital on June 4, 2001.

  • 17. No information regarding the death of anyone in the incident other than the 10 (ten) mentioned above has been received.

    18. Reports from the hospital confirm that Her Majesty Queen Komal Rajya Laxmi Devi Shah, Her Royal Highness Princess Shobha Rajya Laxmi Shahi, Kumar Gorakh Shumsher J. B. Rana and Mrs. Ketaki Chestar, all victims of the incident, have sustained serious injuries.

    19. According to a letter dated June 10, 2001 received from Birendra Military Hospital, Chhauni, when His Royal Highness the Crown Prince was taken to the hospital immediately after the incident, HRH the Crown Prince was wearing black army boots, a camouflage (combat) army jacket and trousers, black leather gloves, black stockings and a camouflage vest. The committee took possession of the clothing, gloves and boots for inspection and after a laboratory test on the blood stains and some yellowish substances on them experts concerned concluded that the stains were of blood group "B". Among the deceased, Her Majesty the Queen and His Royal Highness the Crown Prince also have been found to have blood group "B".

    20. The committee has also received a letter from the hospital, which states that upon arrival at the hospital His Royal Highness the Crown Prince was wearing gloves and the gloves have been handed in to the committee. No gloves other than the single pair (of gloves) in question have been found at the site of the incident and the hospital.

    21.

    (a) Forty-seven (47) cartridge cases fired from a 5.56 caliber colt m-16 A2 with weapon number A0073943 (commando) automatic rifle have been recovered. It has been learnt from experts concerned that the rifle can fire 700 to 1,000 bullets per minute.

    (b) Experts concerned are of the opinion that the 29 cartridge cases found at the site of the incident were fired from a 9mm. caliber MP-5 K automatic sub-machine gun, which can fire up to 900 bullets per minute.

    (c) It has been learnt from experts concerned that the two (2) cartridge cases found at the site of the incident were fired from a 9mm. caliber MP-5 K automatic Ges.m.b.H pistol. The cartridges were found in the pond near the small bridge where His Royal Highness the Crown Prince is said to have been found lying injured by rescuers.

    (d) Captain Madhav Bhandari told the committee at its office that the M-16 gun with no. A0073943 mentioned in chapter (a) was issued as per the demand made by the Royal Guard Military Police, the Royal Palace on 056/5/31 Bikram Era and handed in to the Royal Palace armory (kotkhana) after acquiring it from the Royal Nepalese Army arsenal. In course of his interrogation, ADC to His Royal Highness the Crown Prince Gajendra Bohara mentioned that His Royal Highness the Crown Prince carried this weapon when he went on trekking, and there was a practice of His Royal Highness the Crown Prince taking weapons directly from the Royal Palace armory (kotkhana) whenever His Royal Highness the Crown Prince so wished.

    (e) It has also been found that one pistol and a 9mm. caliber gun were issued as per the demand from the Royal ADC office, the Royal Palace on 2053/1/27 Bikram Era and 2056/7/28 Bikram Era. According to ADC to His Royal Highness the Crown Prince Gajendra Bohara, the weapons were in HRH the Crown Prince's possession.

    (f) Details received from the Royal Palace show that the 9mm. G19 Glock pistol with no. YY 334 was also issued from the arsenal to hand it in to His Royal Highness Prince Nirajan.

    (g) Neither the opinions of experts concerned nor the cartridges recovered confirmed that the 9mm. caliber Glock pistol found at the billiard hall and the 12 bore single barrel shot gun recovered from a corner south-west of the lawn were fired during the incident.

    22. No entrance to the site of the incident other than the main gate which houses the ADC office inside Tribhuvan Sadan at the Narayanhity Royal Palace and a small closed gate in the eastern part were found during the observation of the site of the incident. A sketch of the site of the incident is in annex to this report.

    23. That bullet injuries were the cause of death of all killed in the incident, which took place at the Narayanhity Royal Palace on June 1, 2001, has been substantiated also by the opinion of the physicians concerned of Birendra Military Hospital, Chhauni. Also the injured said in course of interrogations that they sustained the injuries from gun shots. Information received from Birendra Military Hospital also revealed that gun shots were the cause of the injuries sustained by victims of the incident currently at the hospital.

    Press release

    As part of the process of making public the factual details about the tragic incident that took place during a family gathering at the Narayanhity Royal Palace on the night of June 1, 200l, His Majesty King Gyanendra Bir Bikram Shah Dev announced the formation of a high level committee with Chief Justice Keshav Prasad Upadhyaya as Chairman and Speaker of Parliament Taranath Rana Bhat and opposition leader in the House of Representatives Madhav Kumar Nepal as members on June 4, 2001, requiring the committee to submit its report in three days.

    The resignation submitted to His Majesty the King on June 6, 2001 by member of the committee Mr. Madhav Kumar Nepal through its Chairman citing his party's decision not to work on the high level committee and pledging at the same time his party's and his own full cooperation in the process of investigation.

    The Principal Secretariat of His Majesty the King issued a communique on June 6, 2001establishing the following terms of reference for the committee:

    1. To submit to His Majesty the King a report along with the factual details about the incident that took place at the Royal Palace on June 1, 2001.

    2. The committee will have the following powers:

    a) To observe the site of the incident and collect necessary details along with photographs.

    b) Acquire information from family members and other individuals present at the gathering at the site of incident, individuals providing security and other services at the Royal Palace, doctors and nurses involved in the treatment and other individuals whom the committee deems essential to interview.

    c) To collect and examine the weapons, bullets and other objects concerned with the incident and acquire reports on the test and examinations conducted by the hospital in connection with the incident.

    d) To take necessary help from experts concerned regarding the incident.

    e) To seek the assistance of individuals concerned in connection with the execution of the committee's duties.

    3. The tenure of office of the committee will be three days starting from the date of initiating its work.

    4. The office of the committee will be set up at a place specified by the Chairman.

    5. The committee will specify its other procedures on its own.

    The same communique confirmed the acceptance of the resignation submitted by member of the committee and opposition leader in the House of Representatives Mr. Madhav Kumar Nepal.

    As stated in the communique issued by the Principal Secretariat of His Majesty the King on June 6, 2001, the office of the committee was set up at the parliament building on parliament premises as specified by the Chairman of the committee. The committee started its work from June 8, 2001.

    Information and data were collected in course of gathering factual details about the incident in line with the royal proclamation of His Majesty the King while remaining within the framework of the terms of reference specified in the communique issued by the Principal Secretariat of His Majesty the King. The committee's modus operandi was worked out in line with the communique which had authorized the committee to specify its own working procedure. Basically the following methodology was adopted for collection of factual details about the incident:

    (a) Interrogation of the victims of the incident and Royal Family members present at the site of the incident, royal relatives, and security guards, chefs, attendants, Royal Palace service office bearers, individuals engaged in rescue work, physicians and nurses involved in medical treatment and other individuals who seem to be associated with the incident.

    (b) Study of notices and data received from the Principal Secretariat of His Majesty the King and Birendra Military Hospital, and records and documents relating to the medical treatment.

    (c) Collection of guns, bullets, cartridges, blood, brain tissue, fingerprints and clothing found at the site of the incident, and study of scientific and chemical test reports by the experts concerned.

    (d) Consultations with experts concerned, narcotic drug experts and psychologists on the opinions given by experts about the guns, bullets, blood, brain tissue and finger prints, and on technical matters stated in documents relating to medical treatment collected in course of the investigation.

    As it took some more time to complete laboratory tests on various physical substances recovered from the site of the incident in course of submitting a report after following the above methodology and the report could not be completed within the specified time, His Majesty the King extended the tenure of office of the committee by four days starting from June 11, 2001 as per the request of the committee.

     

     

     
     
     
     
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