Nepal’s ex-king to visit India?

February 10th, 2009 - 6:54 pm ICT by IANS  

Kathmandu, Feb 10 (IANS) Nepal’s deposed king Gyanendra is set to go to India to attend a family wedding, which will be his first trip abroad after stepping down as head of an army-backed government in 2006, a report said.

The last Hindu king of Nepal, whose crown was formally abolished in May 2008 and who exited the royal palace a month later to begin life as a commoner, will be attending a wedding in India scheduled Feb 19, the Tarun weekly said.

However, it did not say which former royal relative was getting married, only mentioning that it was a kin of Indian leader Karan Singh.

Singh, a former royal himself, is related to Gyanendra by marriage and visited Nepal in 2006 as Indian prime minister Manmohan Singh’s special envoy to persuade the strong-willed monarch to relinquish power.

The Nepali weekly said that during the wedding the deposed king would also meet Sonia Gandhi, president of India’s Congress party.

However, there was no immediate official confirmation of the report.

In the past, the former king had created a future when he met India’s ambassador to Nepal Rakesh Sood to sound the envoy on his India trip.

Nepal’s Maoists, who fought a 10-year war to abolish monarchy, have said they would not stop the erstwhile king if he chose to go abroad. As a citizen, he was entitled to enjoy all the rights other citizens enjoyed, they said.

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