By Dirgha Raj Prasai
In Nepal, 2017 BS 1st Poush is unforgettable. What the then king Mahendra did on 1 Poush 2017 (15 December 1960) for prosperity of prosperous, sovereign Nepal and Nepalese is immortal in the history of nationalism. The memorial King Mahendra was a great nationalist. The reality was that before 1960, foreigners especially Indians were free to purchase land in Nepal. After 1961, king Mahendra banned foreigners from purchasing Nepalese land. Nepali language was continued as national language across the nation. Before 1960, 90% of Indian currency notes were in use which was removed and use of Nepali currency was made compulsory. Our pride was restored. King Mahendra without any condition asked the Indian force deployed for security of Nepal to leave.
People were compelled to walk through Indian roads to move from one Nepali district to other. In 1961, King Mahendra laid the foundation for East-West Highway at Gailakot to free the people of Indian torment. People were compelled to walk through Indian roads to move from one Nepali district to other. King Mahendra dedicated to build an East-West Highway, about 1000 KM long. The impact of the Highway has been great contributed to the all round socio-economic development issues. A scholar GS Agrawal writes-'The nation has honored the visionary king by naming it Mahendra Rahmarg. In 1961, King Mahendra laid the foundation for East-West Highway at Gailakot to free the people of Indian torment. Nepal was unified under the king Prithbinarayan Shah some two centuries ago. The real integration was completed in 1982 AD.
A Swiss geologist and scholar, Toni Hagen first came in 1950 as a member of the Swiss Mission for Development Aid. His first job was to conduct Nepal's first geological survey. About the reality of the Nepalese politics and the intention of King Mahendra he said- 'I call back December 1960 when King Mahendra staged the royal coup. I never agreed with King Mahendra this step. On the other hand, I would say looking back into the history that King Mahendra was a very great personality. It is mainly for his merit that Nepal survived as an independent country between two big neighbors. He was very clever and handled the dedicate issues.' 25 Nov.1992- Weekly newspaper- The Independent.'
King Mahendra incorporated the phrase ‘Hindu Kingdom’ in the constitution upgrading the morale of India and Hindus all over the world. His work increased Nepal's prestige. He introduced Nepal in the United Nations by adopting the ideology of foreign policy. He maintained a balanced friendship with Chinese powerful leader Mao Ze Dong and Indian powerful Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru. King Mahendra introduced more than 50 industries and organizations that directly benefit the people, fulfilled the essential as education, health, transportation, roads construction, irrigation, electricity.
In 17 August, 1963 the late King introduced the Muluki Ain (people's code) and made attempt to break untouchables, caste discrimination and policy of gender-discrimination. In 1965 he declared land reform act and abolished landlords, secured the right of farmers by ending Birta system. King Mahendra managed the way of active people's participation in the development sectors from the grass root levels He divided Nepal into 14 administrative zones with 75 districts in it. However, the king had not divided the country based on ethnicity or the origin of people residing in the respective zones or districts which is not possible even today. There were more than 4000 villages every village was divided into nine wards and 35 municipalities whose wards were divided 9-35, vary as per the size of the town. That is why he is immortal.
King Mahendra did a lot to give Nepal a separate identity in the international arena. The administrative mechanism of 14 zones and 75 districts are still very scientific and significant. Decentralization of power to every zone by appointing zonal commissioners; introduction of revolutionary land reform policy; start of the construction of the East-West highway without any budget; opening of branches of Nepal Rastra Bank in districts and restricting Indian currency in the market by supplying Nepali currency; opening of schools and colleges in different parts of the country and establishment of the Tribhuwan University are the landmark contributions made by King Mahendra. Furthermore, he encouraged Nepali artists, Nepali singers and Nepali littérateurs. Ratna Recording Sansthan was established to facilitate Nepali artists Otherwise Nepali artists had to travel to Calcutta for recording songs.
King Mahendra provided certain funds to make Nepali film Maitighar. King Mahendra was a courageous and visionary leader who contributed a lot in the development of Nepal in all sectors. He invited travel trade entrepreneurs from foreign countries to develop the tourism sector; he established the Royal Nepal Airlines to boost the tourism industry; he invited many Nepalis settled in India and other countries to serve in Nepal. He started industrialization of Nepal by requesting friendly countries to establish different industries in the country.
It has to be noted that Prithvi Narayan Shah has mentioned a dream in his divine message as a source of encouragement for greater Nepal’s unification, “a girl of 8/9 years of age came to me holding two 'Kadga'(sword) and I asked- ‘who’s daughter are you and she said she was the daughter of Priest Rana and handed me both the 'Khadga'(Sword). Brought something from 'Khokila' and asked me to eat it. Your wishes have been fulfilled.” The girl of Magar caste had incited the king to create the foundation for national unification. In the initial stage Magar, Gurung, Khas, Thakuri, Bhramin including Kami, Damai, Sarki among other castes had helped in the campaign for unification. Later, all the castes supported the campaign. Prithvi Narayan Shah unified the small Hindu states and protected Buddhism and other religions. Because the king had kept the originality of mountainous Nepal was kept alive by allowing the Moon-Sun depicting flag to flutter, we Nepalese are proudly known in the world. Nepalese who disrespects and forgets Prithvi Narayan Shah will never be known as patriot.
Any wolf in sheep's clothing wishes to rewrite history to his own liking and creating a false reality where he shall rule. The corrupt leaders and parties wish to ride over roughshod over the Nepali people and trampling their hopes, dreams and aspirations in the process. This is what we have witnessed for almost two decades now. Democracy in a true sense is the greatest of liberators of society and humanity but instead in Nepal it has turned into a curse that has polluted the very essence and lifeblood of our glorious nation, a true Holy Land, a Hindu nation.
The permanent organization that can protect the nation and its identity is the royal institution. We need to coordinate and balance the Nepali nationality, constitutional monarchy and refined parliamentary democracy, bring the prevalent corruption to an end and to focus on development of backward region and classes against the foreign intervention. We cannot go on supporting the mistakes of the corrupt leaders. No one can survive long by stepping on fire. Royal Institution is compulsion and necessity to establish the nation. To rescue this holy land from an imminent dark future, all patriotic forces, the Nepalese monarchy, and the people, the Nepal Army, court and the chief organs of the State must all unite and defend the nation from chaos. Then, we never forget the nationalistic approaches of King Mahendra!