Nepalese Royal Massacre


 The Nepalese royal massacre occurred on 1 June 2001, in the Narayanhiti Royal Palace , then the residence of the Nepalese monarchy. The official investigation committee blamed crown prince Dipendra of having gunned down his father King Birendra, his mother Queen Aishwarya and seven other members of the royal family during a weekly family get together.

Prince Dipendra became de jure King of Nepal upon his father's death and died whilst in a coma three days after the act. There are claims that Dipendra was already dead before being declared as the King. Gyanendra,dead king Birendra's brother was crowned as king after the massacre.

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 H&K MP5, a Franchi SPAS-12 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.

According to the details of the official probe report released in Kathmandu. After getting injured in the first attack by Dipendra, the late King Birendra picked up the 9mm caliber MP-5K automatic sub-machine gun, which the former had thrown before entering the billiards room in the palace for the second time and firing at the monarch and others, the late king's sister Princess Shova Shahi is quoted as having told the high-level probe panel However, Shahi snatched the weapon from her brother and pulled out the magazine thinking that it was the only weapon Dipendra had.His mother, Queen Aishwarya, 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.

Rumours regarding cause of massacre
The widely circulated rumor 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, which the Shah dynasty have a historic animosity against.The Rana clan had served as the hereditary prime ministers of Nepal, with the title Maharaja, until 1951, and the two clans have a long history of inter-marriages.It is also speculated that the reason for the marriage dispute over Dipendra's choice of wife was that the royal family had a position that the crown prince should not marry someone having relatives in India, as Devyani did.

Conspiracy theories
ManyNepalese people are skeptical of the official report that the then Crown Prince Dipendra carried out the murder.King Birendra and his son Dipendra were very popular and well respected by the Nepalese population. Gyanendra and specially his son Prince Paras were grossly unpopular with the public. Many people believe Gyanendra had a hand in the massacre so that he could assume the throne himself. On the day of the massacre he was in Pokhara whilst other royals were attending a dinner function. His wife Komal, Paras and daughter Prerana were in the room at the royal palace during the massacre. While the entire families of Birendra and Dipendra were wiped out, nobody among-st Gyanendra's family died, his son escaped with slight injuries. His wife sustained a life threatening bullet wound but survived.

Frequently, it has been heard even from the people in government posts that Indian intelligence agency RAW or the American CIAplanned the massacre .
Despite the fact that two survivors have publicly confirmed that Dipendra did the shooting, as was documented in a BBC documentary many Nepali people still consider it a mystery.

After the monarchy was abolished through a populist uprising there have been several claims refuting the official report among them is a recent book 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.

A Nepalese soldier claiming to be an eyewitness to the massacre has said Crown Prince Dipendra, blamed for the ghastly act, was killed before the rest of his family members on the fateful Friday night.The committee found that a bullet had entered his head from the left side though he was right handed.