Author Topic: Nepal legislature rejects king's defence of power grab  (Read 327 times)

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Nepal legislature rejects king's defence of power grab
« on: February 21, 2007, 10:00:55 PM »
Kathmandu - Nepal's interim legislature on Wednesday asked the government to take action against the Nepalese monarch for a controversial address in which he defended his action to seize executive power nearly two years ago.

Legislators termed the address by King Gyanendra as 'unconstitutional, unauthorised and an attempt to make a mockery of democratic process.'

On Wednesday they voted unanimously on a proposal criticising the king and sought action.

In his February 9 address, Gyanendra defended his action to grab full executive powers describing it 'as per the wishes of the people and the failure of the then government to hold general elections in schedule.'

Gyanendra's views caused uproar among the political parties and its sister organisations.

Student unions belonging to the eight main political parties, including the Maoists, have held demonstrations and smashed several statues of Shah kings across the country.

It remained unclear Wednesday what action, if any, would be taken against the king by the government.

King Gyanendra assumed full executive powers on February 1, 2005 after dismissing the government of Sher Bahadur Deuba. At the time, the monarch promised to hold elections within three years.

He also pledged to bring Maoist insurgency under control.

However, his move was widely opposed by the political parties as well as the international community, leading to his isolation that eventually resulted in his inability to deal with escalating Maoists violence.

Gyanendra reinstated the dissolved House of Representatives on April 24, 2006 after violent protests across Nepal led by the Seven Party Alliance and the Maoists.

Since then, political parties have moved to strip the king of all executive power and removed his royal symbol from government offices.

The Constituent Assembly, formed after an election in mid-June, will vote to decide whether the country remains a monarchy or becomes a republic.

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