Falgun 7, 2007 B.S: Leaders arrive at Narayanhiti Durbar
The Royal Proclamation was to be made by King Tribhuvan at 3 p.m, Falgun 7, 2007 B.S from the Narayanhiti Palace. It would be followed by the appointment ceremony of the cabinet ministers of the interim government. The interim government – comprising of Rana and Congress Ministers would lead the government until general elections were held.
The Narayanhiti Durbar at the time wasn’t like what we see today – the old structure (as seen in the photograph) was built for Ranodip Singh Kunwar Rana. Ranodip in turn moved the royal family to the palace in the 1880s. The old structure was demolished in 1958 A.D. to pave way for the new palace (present day museum).
At the palace, most attending guests had arrived – the members who were in the ministerial panel were assigned berths. Other guests who included top army officers, representatives of the British Embassy and the Indian Embassy were also present for the historic moment. King Tribhuvan too had already arrived, and only Shree Teen Mohan Shumsher was yet to arrive.
In the ministerial berth, an argument between Babar Shumsher and B P Koirala owing to the seating arrangement was ensuing – the first seat was allocated to Mohan Shumsher as PM, second to B P Koirala as Home Minister, and the third to Babar Shumsher as Defense Minister. Babar Shumsher was not willing to be seated in the third, and was demanding B P give up his berth. B P too was adamant, however, eventually gave in to Babar Shumsher’s wish.
Meanwhile, Mohan Shumsher arrived – in his usual style and accompanied by the Bijuli Garud. The ‘Bijuli Garad’ was a special force of the Nepali Army assigned for the Prime Minister’s security.
“The battalion swarmed Narayanhiti Palace, and for a moment King Tribhuvan was agitated – he thought the presence of Bijuli Garud was an ominous sign of some untoward conspiracy against him” Singh shared with Mathbar Singh. “Tribhuvan calmed down after the Indian Ambassador Sir C. P. Singh assured the King that the battalion was a final show of might to reflect power and prestige”, Singh added.
King Tribhuvan’s Proclamation:
At 3 p.m., King Tribhuvan made the following proclamation to the people of Nepal:
“To all nobles, religious leaders, subjects, merchants and others of the country,
Whereas the then enthroned King of this Kingdom in 1903 B.S., our late respected great great grandfather Sri Panch Maharajdhiraj Surendra Bir Bikram Shah, had owing to very grave and important reasons, invested his own and on successors behalf absolute authority to rule over this country.
Whereas, the successor of Sri Teen Maharaja Junga Bahadur Rana had, on behalf of our ancestors been running the country in the capacity of Prime Minister of their Majesties and whereas in modern times, Sri Teen Maharaja Mohan Shumsher J B R had been running the country on our behalf and in our name:
Now, therefore, we proclaim that we have constituted a cabinet and appointed to aid and advise us in execution of our works, our highly trusted and dear,
1. Sri Teen Maharaja Mohan Shumsher as Prime Minister and Foreign Minister,
2. Sri Babar Shumsher as Defense Minister,
3. Sri B P Koirala as Home Minister,
4. Sri Subarna Shumsher as Finance Minister,
5. Sri Chudaraj Shumsher as Forestry Minister,
6. Sri Ganesh Man Singh as Minister for Industry and Commerce,
7. Sri Nripa Jung Rana as Education Minister,
8. Sri Bhadrakali Mishra as Transport Minister,
9. Sri Yogna Bahadur Basnet as Minister for Health and Local self-government, and
10. Sri Bharat Mani Sharma as Food and Agriculture Minister.
We urge heartily that all the above persons shall hold office at our pleasure and be collectively responsible to us.
It shall be the duty of the Prime Minister to inform us formally about all decision taken by the cabinet on the subject related to state affairs and it shall also be his duty to provide us formally all information that we all ask for about matters related to state affairs.
And we urge also to all our subjects to be truly loyal to us and to all our successors and order all our officers in the Army and civil service officers in our country to help and cooperate obediently, with all our ministers in execution of their responsibilities.
If all those who were involved in political crime, return to their respective homes by 20/12/2007 B.S. and engage themselves in peaceful activities, they will be granted amnesty and forgiveness and all their properties seized on account of the political crime will be restored to them.
It is our heart’s desire that the new Government and the people will endevour harmony and cooperation for the advancements and prosperity of Nepal.
May god almighty grant us and our authority the strength to our above wishes for the benefit of the people.
Ganesh Man Singh is appointed Minister for Industry and Commerce:
The swearing-in ceremony was being organized by Bijay Shumsher, son of Mohan Shumsher. He was assisted by Narendra Mani Acharya Dixit, a senior and able administrator of the time.
First to be sworn-in was Mohan Shumsher, then Babar Shumsher, followed by B P Koirala, Subarna Shumsher, Chuda Raj Shumsher, and then Ganesh Man Singh.
During Ganesh Man Singh’s turn, unlike B P Koirala who bowed his head before the King, or Subarna Shumsher, who bowed his body for the King, Singh simply folded his hands in a Namaste. This behavior was not liked by Singh’s grandfather Bada Kazi Ratnaman, but Singh believe he was there to take an “oath for a position he had earned by hard work, therefore should not have to bow before the king”.
The king returned his greetings, and smiled at Singh. The oath ceremony duly began, and Singh was sworn in as the Minister for Industry and Commerce. After the swearing-in ceremony, Singh headed back to his seat where he was handed the same copy of the text of the oath signed by him and another document with three red seals which was his ministerial appointment letter. Singh, and all ministers were also given a motor vehicle for official use, which was handed to them at the palace grounds after the swearing-in ceremony.
Thus ended the 104 year long Rana rule over the kingdom of Nepal – after countless struggles by numerous people, many who even sacrificed their lives for the cause, Nepal had finally become a democratic nation – the next government of Nepal would be elected by its people.