Royal crown and other regalia from Shah dynasty on display in museum

- Post Report, Kathmandu

Oct 16, 2018-

The Shah dynasty regalia, including the royal crown, were unveiled at the Narayanhiti Museum-- formerly Narayanhiti Palace-- on Monday.

The valuable crown jewels and artefacts had been nationalised after the 240-year-old Shah regime was overthrown by the Constituent Assembly in May 2008. However, these precious possessions of the erstwhile royal family had not been put on display even after the Narayanhiti Palace was converted into a museum in 2009--until now, that is.

Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli unveiled the centrepieces of the display-- the crown, the tiara worn by Shah queens, king’s sceptre, his sword and shield-- housed inside a bulletproof glass case equipped with a break-in alarm.

Addressing the unveiling ceremony, Prime Minister Oli said that the crown and other royal regalia was a reminder to the current generation and the posterity that general people hold the true power to bring about political transformation, to change the course of history.

“Monarchy has become history. Though the contributions some former monarchs to national unification were positive, that doesn’t justify the system of right to rule on the basis of birth,” Oli said. Bhesh Narayan Dahal, director general of the Department of Archaeology, said the cynosure of the collection would surely be the royal crown. Studded with 723 diamonds and 2,372 pearls, the crown last adorned the head of King Gyanendra Shah.Dahal said the crown was last modified for King Birendra Shah in 1971. To ensure the safety of the historic showpieces, a special security measure has been put in place under the central command of Nepal Army.

The royal artefacts are on display at Surkhet and Rupandehi rooms inside the former palace building. They will be opened for public viewing from October 22 after the Dashain festival. Though the government had announced to exhibit the valuables during the budget speech for the fiscal year 2011-12, the plan got delayed due to security reasons.

Besides security concern, officials say lack of coordination among several line agencies over a number of issues had also prevented the government from exhibiting the royal artefacts.

Published: 16-10-2018 09:00

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