Gorkha Durbar opens for public, signboard outside says republic
KATHMANDU, June 1 - Hot on the heels of last week’s declaration of a republic, the historic Gorkha palace has been opened to the public from Sunday. The palace was opened to the public today after CPN-Maoist Prachanda unveiled a sign-board at the palace premises with the notice ‘Federal Democratic Republic Nepal’ this morning. Prachanda, Maoist second-in-command Dr Baburam Bhattarai and other leaders toured the centuries old palace for the first time after the unveiling of the sign-board. Speaking to the press after touring the palace, Prachanda lauded the efforts of King Prithvi Narayan Shah to unify the country. The country might not have been a republican state had Prithvi Narayan Shah not unified the country, said Prachanda adding that positive aspects of the country’s history should be commended. He also expressed his gratitude to the residents of Gorkha district, responsible for establishing the Shah Dynasty’s rule in Nepal, for their help also in establishing a republic in the country. Maoist leader Babu Ram Bhattarai expressed pride in being able to tour the historic palace and lauded the efforts of the Gorkha district residents in uprooting the centuries old monarchical system. The Gorkha palace carries huge significance in the country’s history as King Prithvi Narayan Shah launched his unification campaign from the palace and later went on to annex smaller states into one single nation.