Monday, April 18, 2011

Unification campaign


Unification Campaign of Prithvi Narayan Shah

Along with the expansion of Gorkha kingdom, Prithvi Narayan Shah wanted to protect the country from the claws of the British Empire. He wanted to foil the evil designs of the British, by uniting the small kingdoms into a strong nation. Therefore, just after his accession, he set his foot on to the task of expanding the Gorkha kingdom which ultimately led to the unification of Nepal.

Invasion of Nuwakot

Prithvi Narayan Shah was an ambitious king. Along with the expansion of Gorkha kingdom, Prithvi Narayan Shah wanted to protect the country from the claws of the British Empire. He wanted to foil the evil designs of the British, by uniting the small kingdoms into a strong nation. Therefore, just after his accession, he set his foot on to the task of expanding the Gorkha kingdom which ultimately led to the unification of Nepal. He wanted to extend the territory of his kingdom far and wide. He also wanted to conquer the small kingdoms and unite them into a strong nation. His main target was the kingdoms of Kathmandu valley. Before invading the valley, he had to capture Nuwakot, which was the gateway to the valley and main trade route between Kathmandu and Tibet. His father Narabhupal Shah had been unsuccessful in his attempt to conquer the kingdom of Nuwakot.

Prithvi Narayan Shah sent his force under the command of Kazi Biraj Thapa to attack Nuwakot. Biraj Thapa did not attack immediately after reaching Nuwakot, but he started to study the strength of the Nuwakot army and the situation of the kingdom. Prithvi Narayan Shah did not like the delay of Biraj Thapa and so he sent another force under the command of Maheswar Panta. The Gorkha troops under the command of Maheswar Panta attacked Nuwakot instantly but the Gorkha troops were badly defeated. Thus, Nuwakot was victorious against the Gorkha invasion for the second time. At that time, the Gorkhali Army was unknown about the geographical situation of Nuwakot. During the war, the two Gorkhali commanders blamed each other. On the other hand, the Nuwakot soldiers were aware of the strategic points and they fought at the risk of their lives to save the sovereignty of their kingdom.

Visit of Benaras:

The defeat at the invasion of Nuwakot taught Prithvi Narayan Shah a good lesson. He realized that the standard of his army was below what he had estimated. His troops lacked arms and ammunition and sufficient rations. Leaving his kingdom under the care of his trusted Kazi Kalu Pandey, he went to Benaras (Kashi) to collect war weapons, and to study the polotical and economic condition of the East India Company and other Baise, Choubise Rajya. He reached Benaras, worshipped Bishwanath and changed his Gotra from 'Bharadwaj' into 'Kasyap'. With the hielp of his father-in-lay Abhiman Singh, he acquired different kinds of arms and ammunition necessary for his army. He came back to Gorkha via Butwal and began to train his soldiers in the art of warfare. With the advice of Kalu Pandey he sent for young men from the Terai, recruited them in the Gorkha army and gave them proper training. He began to prepare for the next invasion of Nuwakot.

Peace Alliance with Lamjung:

Kazi Kalu Pandey was a wise, brave and a far-sighted statesman. King Prithvi Narayan Shah had great trust in him. It was Kalu Pandey who advised the king to maintain peace and friendship with the neighbouring kingdoms. He was afraid that the neighbouring kings might attack Gorkha while Prithvi Narayan Shah would be away on his invasion campaign. Prithvi Narayan Shah thus sent Kalu Pandey who had a cordial talk with the king of Lamjung at the basin of the river, Chepe. Because of the diplomatic mind of Kalu Pandey, and alliance could be made between Gorkha and Lamjung, the two traditional enemies. After that, Gorkha made an alliance with Kaski, Tanahun and Palpa.

Conquest of Nuwakot:

Gorkha was now made secure from all sides. Both Prithvi Narayan Shah and Kalu Pandey thought that it was the right time to invade Nuwakot. Under the command of Prithvi Narayan Shah himself, the Gorkha troops attacked Nuwakot on 26 September 1744 from three sides. A troop under the command of Kalu Pandey, ascended the hill from the North through Gerkhu. The Second troop took the Dharma Pani route under the command of Kirti Mahoddam Shah. A third troop was under the command of Prithvi Narayan Shah himself, attacked from the front. Shandermani Rana, the commander of the Nuwakot army was killed in the battle-field and the troops fled to Belkot. Thus, Nuwakot fell in the hands of Prithvi Narayan Shah.

Then Prithvi Narayan Shah attacked Belkot. Kalu Pandey was not in favour of the hasty action but Prithvi Narayan Shah, who was encouraged by his conquest of Nuwakot, gallantly attacked Belkot. The Gorkha troops suffered a heavey loss in this battle. At last, the Gorkha troops won a victory over Belkot. Jayanta Rana, who was in the past, the commander of the Gorkha army during the reign of Narabhupal Shah, was the commander of the Malla troops installed at Belkot. It is said that Prithvi Narayan Shah ordered his soldiers to skin the living body of Jayanta Rana. He was said to have treated Jayanta Rana in that manner to show the fae of a betrayer of Gorkha. After the conquest of Nuwakot, Prithvi Narayan Shah began to control all the areas around the valley. He captured Naddum, Mahadev Pokhari, Dahachowk, Ippa, Malta, Siranchowk, etc.

Licchavi kings


Famous Lichhavi Kings

Vaisalia was the Lichchhavis homeland. After it was destroyed by Ajatsatru, they flew away to Nepal. Supuspa was the first lichchhavis to enter Nepal and Jaydev I established Lichchhavi rule in Nepal in around 300 A.D. Jaya Dev I was the first king of this line. He has defeated Vasker Verma of of soma dynasty and established Lichchhavis dynasty.

Famous Kings:
A. Mana Dev: The first historical king of nepal. His change Narayan inscription dated 464 A.D. gives valuable information about Lichchhavis rule. He suppressed the feudal chiefs of the east and west and also conquered Mallapuri. he minted Manaka coin and constructed Managriha the new palace for him.

B. Ansuverma: He was not belonged to Lichchhavi dynasty, the was a famous king of the period. He suppressed the powerful Guptas (Courtiers) a malla Thakuri from western Nepal was apppointed as courtier in Shiva Dev 1st place. He introduces various reforms. He constructed Kailash Kut Bhawan.

C. Jaya Dev II : He was the last famous king of Lichhavi dynasty. His Pashupati inscription gives the genealogy of the of Lichchhavi dynasty. He did very well reformation in the part of social and political, different types of taxes, art and architecture, trade and commerce.
Mediaeval Period :

Raghavadevia who founded a ruling dynasty since 879 A.D. ; by which date the Lichchhavi dynasty come to an end and it is guessed that a new Thakuri dynasty was started by Raghadeva, according to Dr. Regimi this dynasty have ruled till 1044 A.D. by around 10 kings of this time. At about 11th century, Nepal was split into three states. The Khasiya Mallas dominated the western Nepal, the Dayas took control of the eastern Terai by nanya dev, and the Mallas come to power in Kathmandu valley. In due course of thime the Western Nepal was further divided into 46 Principalities:- 24 in Gandak region known as Chaubisi and Baise in Karnali region known as Baise. The eastern states were also divided into at least three principalities ruled by sena kings. The Kathmandu valley was split into three small kingdom - Kantipur, Lalitpur and Bhaktapur during the time of Yaksha Malla in 14th century.

Amar singh thapa


Amar Singh Thapa was the General of the Nepalese forces of western front in the Anglo-Nepalese War. He is regarded as one of the National heroes of Nepal.
His major achievement was the unification of Nepal by annexation of several western principalities like Jumla, Doti, Kumaon, Garhwal, Dehradun, Srinagar and Kangra, as well the annexation Palpa to the Kingdom of Nepal.
Amar Singh Thapa served as the Nepalese care taker of the western principalities and protectorates west of the Mahakali River. He carried out small wars, especially with King of Punjab, Ranjit Singh engaged in defending the western fronts of Nahan, Chamba, Almora, Kangra, Saharanpur, Dehradun against his British counterpart General David Ochterrlony. He was not in favour of the Sugauli Treaty but of a temporary armistice so that after some time it would have been possible to claim on the Nepalese possessions ceded to the British.
Amar Singh Thapa also Built a temple of the goddess Ganga in the early 19th century. The town of Gangotri in Uttarakhand, India is centred around this temple. To this day, it is one of the four sites in the Char Dham pilgrimage circuit, the most important Hindu pilgrimage circuit in the Indian Himalayas.
Amar Singh Thapa voluntarily retired and died on his pilgrimage to Gosaikunda.

legends of nepal

Legends and Heroes

prithivi narayan shah
Prithvi Narayan Shah (1723 - 1775)

Nepal's most famous King who united individual states into one Kingdom of Nepal.

He is regarded as the founder of the Nation, who remained a King from 1768 until his death in 1775

Shah was unlike most rulers. He believed in giving freedom to the people and he is the #1 National Hero of Nepal

One of his contributions to the nation, highly recognized even-today, is his efforts to eradicate slavery in Nepal. With his help, Nepal had started eradicating slavery, while slavery was still in practice all over the world.

The Royal Palace used by Prithivi King is located in the Gurkha District, which can be visited easily from Kathmandu or Pokhara.
Birendra Bir Bikram Shah Dev
Birendra Bir Bikram Shah Dev
(December 28, 1945 – June 1, 2001)

Regarded as the most friendly King Nepalese ever had, he died in a Royal Palace Massacre which also killed 9 of his family members including his wife, his son Dipendra - then the would be King of Nepal. Nepalese media as well as foreign news media such as BBC and CNN conclude that "Dipendra shot himself after shooting his entire family because of his parents's dislike of his choice of bride" but majority of Nepalese view Royal Massacre as the number one unsolved mystery of Nepal.

King Favored Parliamentary Multi-Party Democracy. Birendra's warm and friendly personality lives in the hearts of many Nepalese.
bisheshwor prasad koirala
Bisheshwor Prasad Koirala

Bisheshwor was the first Prime minister of Nepal. He was the leader of the First political party - the Nepali Congress. He was a charismatic political leader of Nepal

His hobbies were politics and literature. He fought for Nepalese freedom and democracy. In Short, his name is written as BP Koirala. Many of today's Nepali leaders follow BP Koirala's principals of leadership and patriotism.

Many buildings and places in Nepal are named after him such as BP Koirala College, BP Marg (Junction).

"Koirala still has a following in Nepal and his presence in the country even in jail is a factor that the King can't ignore." -- The Washington Post, December 3, 1977
narayan gopal
Narayan Gopal - No radio ends its daily programming without a song by Narayan Gopal. He is the "Sor Samrat" in Nepali, meaning "the King of vocal" / "The King of Singers". Narayan Gopal earned many awards including Radio Nepal's Sarbottam Awards, Ratna Recording Award, Lions Awards and Jagadamba Award. His songs have heart-touching lyrics like the one "Jharay ko pat jai bhayo.. Ujhad Mero Jindaki.." meaning "Like a dead leaf fallen from a tree, deserted my life like the leaf", a typical song for someone who is dumped by his girl friend! and equally the song for lovers and dancers the "Mohani Laglahi Gaulayko Bolilay" from the motion picture "Chino". Mr. Gopal's favorite song writer was Kali Prasad Rijal. Think of a tragic and sad songs of a broken-heart or think about the most famous Nepali singer of all time, That's him who left this earth a while back but never the hearts of Nepalese!
ganesh man singh
Ganesh Man Singh (1915 - 1997)

Ganesh man was the leader of Nepali Congress Party. He was the center of the popular movement of 1990 that restored multi-party democracy in Nepal.

Ganeshman did not believe in the titles such Prime Minister or Ministries, in fact he was once asked by Nepali King to take upon the title "Prime Minister", but he declined. Ganesh Man did his share of contributions to the nation building not as a political figure but as an ordinary Nepali. He is called the "Father of Democracy" in Nepal
sidhi charan shrestha
Siddhi Charan Shrestha

Known as the famous poet Yuga Kabi Siddhi Charan Shrestha. Spend 18 years in jail in times of Ranas (Royal Regimes). But nothing could him, his revolutionary poetries gained momentum and respect.
 pasang lamu sherpa
Pasang Lhamu Sherpa
(1961 to 1993)

In 1991, she became the first Nepali women to conquer the highest Mountain on Earth - Mount Everest. Deadly storm took her life as she was returning from the submit in 1993. She remains the number one Nepali Female Icon. She is often called the "Goddess of Courage and Determination" and she lives in Nepal forever.
laxmi prasad devkota
Laxmi Prasad Devkota (1909 - 1959)

Nepal's Greatest Poet. His work "Muna-Madan" is the most read Nepali book of all time. His lyrics "Kun Mandir ma janchau yatri, Kun samagri puja garne" (In which temple are you going, and what are you offering to the God, hey pilgrims.) remains the #1 Nepali lyrics of all time.
Tenzing Norgay
Tenzing Norgay

In 1953, Tenzing Norgay along with this friend Sir Edmund Hillary, become the first to stood atop Everest, making Nepal known to the world and climbers. view photos. Tenzing died at the age of 71, on May 9th, 1986.
Amar Singh Thapa
Amar Singh Thapa

Commender in Chief of Nepal during Anglo-Nepalese War time. Fought and won over British India with Gurkha Army's, stones and indigenous weapons like knives, logs and stones.
Bhimsen Thapa
Bhimsen Thapa

Born in Gorkha district, Bhimsen Thapa remained the Prime minister of Nepal from 1775 to 1839. He is regarded as one of the heros of Nepal, also the first prime Minister who fought with British India regime back in 1814. Thapa's one of the contribution to the country, the military and social reforms, are remembered even Today.
Araniko (Balabahu)

Araniko was born in Patan, Nepal. Not long after he showed his pagoda style architecture skills in Nepal, he moved to China where he demonstrated his architecture skills, he died at the age of 61 in 1305. His legacy lives on; Kathmandu to Khodahari, a highway that links Nepal to China, is dedicated to his name, Arniko Rajmarg (Highway), and the oldest Nepal China Society in his name, the Nepal Arniko Society.

Bhimsen Thapa

Early life

Bhimsen Thapa was born in the small district of Gorkha. His father, Major Amar Singh Thapa (not to be confused with the commander of Gorkhali forces in the Gurkha War), was a faithful soldier of King Prithvi Narayan Shah. At the age of 11, Bhimsen Thapa came into contact with the Nepalese Royal Palace when his bratabandha ceremony was held together with the Crown Prince Rana Bahadur's. Thapa and the Crown Prince soon developed a friendship with Thapa eventually serving as King Rana Bahadur's personal secretary at the age of 22 in Varanasi, India.


Dharahara, the Bhimshen Stambha
During his stay in Varanasi, he studied the expansion and true intentions of the British East India Company in South Asia. He became the first Prime Minister of Nepal upon his (and the king's) return to the country when the returning monarch was assassinated by his own half brother; which general Bhimsen Thapa took as a chance to wipe out his friends.
Thapa served for 31 years under six kings. He appealed all South Asian states to fight collectively against the British and declared war on the English East India Company in 1816 as the commander of the army and as the Prime Minister. However of the ill preparation, long standing internal unification campaign, lack of foreign assistance as well as military confrontation with China, Nepal lost the war which precipitated his downfall. However he continued to rule for another 13 years whence he brought about several military, judicial, social and economic reforms in Nepal. The army was modernized in European style, several ill social practices were abolished, unused land were brought under cultivation and the administration was updated. The Dharahara and Sundhara of Kathmandu, the Bagdurbar and Teku bridge were constructed by him.

 Retirement and Death

Eventually, he was forced to retire by his opponents, the Pandeys and the Basnets, other Gorkha favorites, on conspiracy charges. Later, he was forced to kill himself.
King Rana Bahadur Shah said of him "If I die the nation will not die, but if Bhimsen Thapa dies the nation will collapse". Maharaja Ranjit Singh of Punjab said of him "If I had Bhimsen on my service, I know what many things I would have achieved". Karl Marx praised Bhimsen Thapa by referring him the only man in Asia who braved to protest submission to the colonists.
Prime Minister Bhimsen Thapa was the maternal Grandfather of Prime Minister Jung Bahadur Rana who was driven to kill the Pandeys and the Basnets to avenge Bhimsen Thapa. This brought the chapter of Nepalese history known as the Ranas. It is believed that he died of the grief that was told to him that his wife would be walked through the streets naked.

Girja prasad koirala

Early life

Koirala was born in Bihar, India, in 1925. His father, Krishna Prasad Koirala, was a Nepali living in exile.

Political career

Koirala became involved in politics in 1947, leading a workers' strike.In 1948 Koirala founded the Nepal Mazdoor Congress, later known as the Nepal Trade Union Congress-Independent. Later, in 1952 he became the President of the Morang District Nepali Congress and held that office until he was arrested and imprisoned by King Mahendra following the 1960 royal coup. Upon his release in 1967, Koirala, along with other leaders and workers of the party, was exiled to India until his return to Nepal in 1979. Koirala was General Secretary of the Nepali Congress Party from 1975 to 1991 Koirala was actively involved in the 1990 Jana Andolan which led to the abrogation of the Panchayat rule and the introduction of multiparty politics into the country.

[edit] First term

In Nepal's first multiparty democratic election in 1991, Koirala was elected as a Member of Parliament from the Morang-1 and Sunsari-5 constituencies. The Nepali Congress won 110 of the 205 seats in the Pratinidhi Sabha (House of Representatives), the lower house of parliament. He was subsequently elected as the leader of the Nepali Congress parliamentary party and was appointed as Prime Minister by King Birendra.
During his first term, the House of Representatives enacted legislation to liberalize education, media and health sectors in the country. The government also founded the Purbanchal University and the B.P. Koirala Institute of Health Sciences(BPKIHS) in the Eastern Development Region and granted licenses to the private sector to run medical and engineering colleges in various parts of the country. The government also undertook the construction of the B.P. Koirala Memorial Cancer Hospital in Bharatpur, Nepal with assistance from the government of China.
In November 1994, he called for a dissolution of parliament and general elections after a procedural defeat on the floor of the House when 36 Members of Parliament (MPs) of his party went against a government-sponsored vote of confidence. This led to the Communist Party of Nepal (Unified Marxist Leninist)-led coalition coming to power in the elections that followed.

 Second term

Koirala took over as Prime Minister from Surya Bahadur Thapa following the collapse of the coalition government led by Thapa. Koirala first headed a Nepali Congress minority government until December 25, 1998, after which he headed a three-party coalition government with the Communist Party of Nepal (UML) and the Nepal Sadhbhawana Party.

[edit] Third term

Koirala became Prime Minister in 2000 for his third term following the resignation of Krishna Prasad Bhattarai, under whose leadership the Nepali Congress Party had won the parliamentary election. The party had won claiming that Krishna Prasad Bhattarai would be the Prime Minister, but Koirala led a group of dissident MPs and forced Bhattarai to resign or face a no-confidence motion. At that time Nepal was fighting a civil war against the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist). During his third term as Prime Minister, his government was plagued by allegations of corruption. Following the massacre in the Royal Palace, Koirala was further criticized for his perceived inability to handle the crisis. Koirala resigned in July 2001 after which the military was mobilized in the civil war for the first time, something Koirala had unsuccessfully attempted to do while in office. He was replaced by former Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba, who was elected by a majority of members of the Nepali Congress.

[edit] Fourth term

After the Loktantra Andolan and the reinstatement of the Nepal House of Representatives, Pratinidhi Sabha, on 24 April 2006, Koirala was selected to become Prime Minister by the leaders of the Seven Party Alliance.
The reinstated House of Representatives passed laws to strip the King of his powers and bring the Army under civilian control.
Following the promulgation of the interim constitution, Koirala, as the Prime Minister, became the interim head of state of Nepal.
On 1 April 2007, Koirala was re-elected as Prime Minister to head a new government composed of the SPA and the CPN (Maoist).
Following the April 2008 Constituent Assembly election, the Constituent Assembly voted to declare Nepal a republic on 28 May 2008. Koirala, speaking to the Constituent Assembly shortly before the vote, said that "we have a big responsibility now"; he said that Nepal was entering a "new era" and that "the nation's dream has come true".
In the discussions on power-sharing that followed the declaration of a republic, the Nepali Congress proposed that Koirala become the first President of Nepal; however, the CPN (Maoist), which had emerged as the strongest party in the Constituent Assembly election, opposed this. At a meeting of the Constituent Assembly on June 26, 2008, Koirala announced his resignation, although it would not be finalized until after the election of a President, to whom the resignation had to be submitted.
Koirala was present for the swearing in of Ram Baran Yadav, the first President of Nepal, on July 23, 2008.He submitted his resignation to Yadav later on the same day. CPN (M) Chairman Prachanda was elected by the Constituent Assembly to succeed Koirala on August 15, 2008, and Koirala congratulated Prachanda on this occasion.

Recent activity

Towards the end of his life, Koirala was leading a democratic front composed of parties that supported and promoted liberal democratic principles and aspired to establishment of a long-term democratic form of governance in Nepal. To honor his special role in resolving the Maoist conflict in Nepal, the Nepalese government recently nominated him for the Nobel Peace Prize.

Anglo nepal war

While the Gorkhas had been expanding their empire – into Sikkim in the east, Kumaon and Garhwal in the west and into the British sphere of influence in Oudh in the south – the British East India Company had consolidated its position in India from its main bases of Calcutta,Madras and Bombay. This British expansion had already been resisted in India, culminating in three Anglo-Maratha wars as well as in thePunjab where Ranjit Singh and the Sikh Empire had their own aspirations. It was therefore imperative to the British that the Gorkha War was quickly and successfully concluded.
When the Kathmandu durbar solicited Gorkha chiefs’ opinions about a possible war with the British, Amar Singh was not alone in his opposition, declaring that – "They will not rest satisfied without establishing their own power and authority, and will unite with the hill rajas, whom we have dispossessed." This contrasts sharply with the prime minister Bhimsen Thapa – " ... our hills and fastness are formed by the hand of God, and are impregnable." The Gorkha prime minister realised the Nepalese had several advantages over the British including knowledge of the region and recent experience fighting in the mountainous terrain. However, the British had numerical superiority and far more modern weapons.