Skip to main content


Ex-Crown Prince Paras gave an interview to the Singapore based The New Paper on Sunday trying to explain the motives behind cousin Dipendra's actions of blowing away the Nepalese monarchy. A combination of frustrations had befuddled the mind: an ill-starred matrimonial proposal, a lucrative gun deal that would not transpire and a monarchy that was withering away due to a calamitous, in his view, inaction of his father. The interview seems to have stirred a hornet's nest with old palace officials like Sanu Bhai Dangol, an un-named retired lieutenant general, a military secretary in the palace who was fired and the Maoist leader "Ananta", et all throwing in their two-bit insight. What is significant here is that the conspiracy theory refuges to go away with the prime minister calling for a new probe commission into the palace massacre 8 years after the incident took place. When the truth is stranger than fiction it challenges credibility.

There are other famous stories which have invited incredulity through significant time spans. The murder of Tsar Nicholas II and his family by the Bolsheviks is a case in point. Did the drunk Bolshevik firing squad miss two persons that fateful night? We have read the famous story of Anastasia, how she surfaced in Berlin years after the event claiming to be the missing princess, how she had a striking resemblance to the real Anastasia, her in depth knowledge of the father's household, how the royal family in exile abandoned her and ultimately how she lost the landmark case in a German court which she filed to prove she was the real princess.

Less known is the story of the Crown Prince, Tsarevich Alexei. After the fall of the Soviet Union, the historian Edvard Radzinsky published The Last Tsar with substantial research done in Communist archives hitherto unavailable to unearth discrepancies in the official story. He recounts the curious story of a man in a mental ward in Petrozavodsk around 1947 A.D. who claimed to be Alexei. He strikingly resembled Nicholas I and II. Birth record showed that he was born in 1904 the year of Alexei's birth, he knew intimate details of the Romanov family circle as well as the layout of the Winter Palace, he was a haemophiliac and, most tellingly, he suffered from a condition known as cryptorchidism (one testicle had not descended), a condition the tsarevich was recorded to have.

Two bodies did go missing that night for sure and when the Russians dug up the bodies from the mining pit, later identified as those of the Tsar's family, there were two bodies still missing, one male and the other female. Only very recently the Russians again unearthed two more bodies and have officially DNA-tested them to be those of the Tsarevich Alexei and his elder sister Maria! How surprising this find is in light of the fact that the Bolshevik assassins have officially reported to their superiors that they burnt those two missing bodies that night!

Who can forget the shots fired from the grassy knoll? People who were present on the motorcade route that fateful day of President Kennedy's assassination in Dallas vouch for the shots heard coming from the grassy knoll not far from where the president was shot. The killing bullet actually jerks Kennedy's head back as if the shot was fired from the front; Lee Harvey Oswald inside the book repository was behind the president, so his shot should have jerked the president's head forward! Filmmaker Oliver Stone's compelling probe into the assassination in the form of an engrossing movie JFK starring Kevin Kostner deals with all these anomalies. The central theme of his argument is that Lee Harvey Oswald was not the lone assassin. This conspiracy theory will never rest.

Dodi Fayed's father the billionaire Egyptian businessman and owner of the much heralded Harrod's department store in London will never ever believe that his son and Princess Diana died in a motorcar accident. Indeed, it is quite far-fetched to believe that a driver of the Princess would be so inebriated with alcohol that he would slam full-speed into the supporting column of the Pont d'Alma tunnel in Paris. What happened to the Fiat Uno the Mercedes had grazed before hitting the pillar as the paint was still visible on the side of the smashed car? Why did no one own up to it after such intensive publicity if it was just an innocent commuter who was in the wrong place at the wrong time? Despite a coroner's inquest that lasted for six months and heard testimony from 278 witnesses dismissing the conspiracy theory, there will always be people who believe otherwise.

Fact is many times stranger than fiction. What do Nepalese want to believe happened that nightmarish night? As a nation we are susceptible to hoaxes; rumors fly faster than bullets in our town. Sometimes it is wise to believe the story as it is. Hornets can sting the wrong people too!


  1. Hi Subodh,
    The palace massacre should have been investigated by an independent body [?Scotland Yard] and post mortem done on the bodies instead of hurriedly cremating them at night .
    As there are many witnesses to the massacre and all have pointed to Dipendra as the culprit there is no doubt to my mind that he did it. Stories that someone wearing a mask to look like Dipendra are just too far fetched.
    But as time goes on fact ,fiction and myth merge into one another and I wonder what people will say 100 or even 500 years on.

  2. What do you think is Ex CP's motive behind this interview?

  3. He is pre-empting the possible flak from another probe; no longer do they have immunity.

  4. I don't think Scotland Yard would have been necessary, and why should we kow tow to the Brits? Postmortems were not done, in keeping with Nepali tradition; but I do agree that this tradition should have been broken in this horrendous case. The killing was done by Dipendra, without doubt. BUT who really killed him? Shall we add one more conspiracy to the barrel?


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog


If only the Tudor King Henry VIII of England were as lucky as Jung Bahadur Rana, he would have had male heirs aplenty and he would not have had to behead a few of his queens in the hope of his next one presenting him with an heir. All the Maharanis would live together at Hampton Court Palace in seeming harmony at least until the death of the Maharajah. If England had the tradition of Sati, who among Henry's wives would have had the macabre honour of being buried alive with him? Would her be Catherine of Aragon his first queen? Or Anne Boleyn? Or the fair Jane Seymour, his favorite queen who gave him his only male heir, had she not died in her postnatal illness?

Maharajah Jung Bahadur Rana had many wives because he did not have the Catholic Church to worry about. He had at least a dozen sons and innumerable daughters from at least 13 recorded wives. He married some for love, others for political alliances with various noble houses, including a sister of Fateh Jung Shah, one of th…


Prime Minister Jung Bahadur Rana left England for France with a rich treasure trove of memories and an ambition his experiences in Britain had fueled for his own poor and backward nation. He was heartbroken too as he had to leave behind his paramour Laura Bell. Far from the complexities of ruling a highly destabilized country coming so soon after the tumultuous Kot and Bhandarkhal episodes, Jung had truly relaxed in England and had grown fond of the young Irish lass. He wanted to stay longer but the situation back home was unfavourable. Jung was seething with anger that his brother Bom Bahadur who he left behind as officiating prime minister had not been able to take a firm grip on the affairs of state. Even in faraway England he got reports that his enemies were again trying to rear their ugly heads, he would have to smite them with the power of his ingenuity once more. He knew he could not trust his ambitious third brother Badri Narsingh and the one after that Ranoddip was an indeci…


As a kid I used to gape in wonderment at the magnificent crown my father possessed not knowing that the jewels were only for show. The dark green emerald drops were made of glass, the sparkling diamonds were probably zirconium and the pearls were not of the best sort. Every Rana general had his personal crown in those days and my father was no exception. I did not recognize the difference between this personal crown of father's and the other more valuable crown of the Nepalese Commander-in-Chief of the Army that my father was seen wearing in many a portrait displayed about the house. Little did I know that my father was the last person to put on his head the army chief's crown from the Rana era, real glittering diamonds, snow white pearls and thumb-sized emerald drops and all. The feather in the crown was the magnificent plumes of the Bird of Paradise that gave it such a majestic look.

Nepal had only three crowns that were genuinely the real stuff bedecked with expensive pear…