Birendra Bir Bikram Shah Dev will be remembered as a beloved and renowned monarch who guided Nepal through tough times with clarity and wisdom. Even today, King Birendra is the most beloved of all the monarchs. But what was it that made Birendra Nepal’s most popular monarch?
After what is claimed to have been a disagreement about the son’s choice of wife at a family dinner party, King Birendra was assassinated by his own son and heir. The massive outpouring of grief on the streets of Kathmandu on the day of his funeral could not have expressed this more clearly. Emotionally wrought crowds went on chanting: “Our beloved king is immortal.” at his funeral.
King Birendra was viewed as the people’s king. A decent and humble ruler, but not the proper person to lead and grow a country. For ten to fifteen years, he was a dictatorial ruler who practically had absolute command over everything, but not much changed. However, he continues to be Nepal’s most beloved monarch. Here are some of the reasons why King Birendra is Nepal’s most beloved monarch:
1. First and foremost, King Birendra proposed Nepal to be “A Zone of Peace” in 1975 at the UN General Assembly.
2. He gave democracy in the sense he eliminated the panchayat system in 1989/90.
3. Introduced a number of rights with the protection of human rights in Nepal.
4. Lived as a commoner with extremely minimalistic living resources.
5. A humble king who took a very little royal salary and made his wealth public.
6. People’s beloved king with no ego who did not exploit their position for ill gains.
7. Always listened to Nepali civilians’ demands even though he was incompetent.
8. A good monarch who genuinely cared about the people.
9. His stability during his entire regime cannot be matched with any monarchs.
10. King Birendra and his whole family got killed in an unfortunate massacre.
11. Most documented king from American tips to Bristish visits.
12. Pretty much respected everywhere in the world during his regime.
13. A diplomatic person with a good relationship with the then Royal Nepalese Army.
So, what do you think about King Birendra becoming one of the beloved monarchs of Nepal? Was he really a beloved king during his regime or became beloved due to the unfortunate royal massacre?