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From The Nepali Press
Dipendra and Devyani

While Dipendra was studying in England, he had a classmate called Charles whose father is a Lord and who has a sister, Shelly. This Lord was Dipendra's local guardian when he was in England between 1987 and 1990. Around that time, Devyani also come to England for some sort of course. She came into contact with Shelly, whose father became Devyani's guardian too.

Although Dipendra and Devyani lived in different parts of England, since they both had the same guardian, they first met at the house of Shelley and Charles. Both Dipendra and Devyani were in their early 20's, just out of their teens. At that ime, Dipendra was quite a jolly fellow who liked to joke a lot. It is said that it is easy for the young to fall in love very quickly. It is around this time, that Dipendra told Devyani in front of Charles and Shelly that she was fit to be the future queen of Nepal.

The relationship between Dipendra and Devyani began there. Until 1993 or 1994, the palace did not know anything about it. In fact, Devyani's parents were unaware of it for another year. In 1995, Devyani's older sister Urvasi married into a rich business family in India. Just before this wedding, Devyani's parents sent a proposal to the palace, although they had no idea about their daughter's relationship with Dipendra until then. Sources say Their Majesties brushed the proposal aside, saying they were in no hurry to get Dipendra married.

Garima Rana, Supriya Shah and Devyani Rana were the three women short-listed for Dipendra. Although he loved Devyani, and Garima was in the news for her educational achievements, the palace thought Supriya was the ideal match for the crown prince. Shree Rajya Laxmi Rana, Dipendra's maternal grandmother, was given the task of selecting the right girl. Sources say that she once contacted Devyani's mother. Devyani's mother had no idea of her daughter's relationship and mentioned casually to Shree Rajya Laxmi that Devyani had grown up accustomed to extreme comfort and wealth, and that she was the grand daughter of Vijaya Raje Scindia of the house of Gwalior, known for its wealth. She further said that Nepali royalty was relatively very poor and she had to think seriously about whether her daughter could survive if she married into a poor house.

Devyani's mother unwittingly called the House of Shah poor, and this shut the doors on her daughter getting married to Dipendra. The palace thought Devyani was too ambitious. Our sources also say that Devyani has over Rs 50 million in different banks in the city, while Dipendra had to get by on his Rs 2.4 million government allowance. Although the palace ruled out marriage with Devyani, Dipendra could not get her off his mind and there was not a single day he was in the city that he did not meet her. Apparently, Dipendra's ADCs used to pick Devyani up everyday. They never knocked on the main door of Bijay Bas, but used the side door. They'd drive up to this door and then ring Devyani on her mobile phone. Devyani would come out and go to meet the prince.

Dipendra later told Devyani that his family was against their marriage, and she is said to have told him that she was willing to marry someone else, but Dipendra did not want to hear anything of this sort. While Devyani and Dipendra were madly in love, proposals for Devyani were coming from all over-the House of Jodhpur, the House of Bhagalpur and the House of Jaipur. In fact, the heir to the House of Baroda parked himself at Hotel Yak and Yeti and wanted to meet Devyani. The couple was passing through a very difficult time, and Devyani asked Dipendra to finally make a decision. Sources say that Dipendra went to Bijay Bas with a bottle of poison and told Devyani that if she did not marry him, he would commit suicide. After this incident Devyani's parents apparently told the heir of Baroda that they were very sorry, but their daughter could not marry him.

Dipendra could not imagine life without Devyani. Last year when he was training to be a parajumper, the day of his first jump, he rang Devyani and told her that he would only do it if she made breakfast for him. She did, and met him at the airport with his breakfast. He ate and went for his jump, while Devyani went to the banks of the Manahara river where he was supposed to land. He drove her home and then went home himself. This was only one of many such occasions.

The pair used to buy each other very luxurious presents when they went abroad. The expensive Omega watch Dipendra wore was a gift from Devyani. The camera that he used was also from Devyani. She recently bought him a ?1,000 T-shirt in London. Dipendra also gave her a lot of presents.

Since both were madly in love, it was becoming very difficult for them to be apart from each other. The palace could not understand this. No one besides Garima, who is related to Devyani, could understand this and she very politely removed herself from this situation and got married. Supriya also later realised this and slowly moved out of the picture.

The palace never changed its position. Dipendra also stood his ground. Dipendra was blinded by his love for Devyani, this drove him mad and he then committed what we today know as the incident that took place at the royal palace on the night of 1 June.

(11 JAN 2013 - 17 JAN 2013)