The history of Nepal is venerable and a glorious one. Being a small landlocked country located between the India and China, the history also seems to have been affected by these countries. The civilisation of Nepal has been traced back to a long ago and until now there have been myriad changes in the country. Presently, Nepal is a multilingual, multi-religious, multicultural country. Before mid 18th century, “Nepal” was mostly applied only to the Kathmandu valley. Little is known about the early history of Nepal.
History of Nepal Gopalas and Kirats dynasties
The history of Nepal dates back to 11000 years ago. The Vamshavalis or the chronicles, the oldest of which was written during the 14th century is fairly a reliable basis for the ancient history of Nepal. It mentions the rule of dynasties like Gopalas and Kirats. Mahabharata, which is said to be, composed at around 1000 BC mentions Yalamber, the first Kirati king to rule Nepal. It is said that during the battle of Mahabharat, Yalamber went to witness the battle with the intention of taking the side with the losing party. Lord Krishna was cognizant of his intention, his valour and strength of unified Kiratis and thus to deter the prolongation of the war, he cut off Yalamber’s head. Kirats are said to have ruled Nepal for about 1000 years. Current Limbu and Rai are said to be descendants of Kirats. During the Kirat regime, the birth of reverential figure, Gautam Buddha took place and the great emperor of China, Ashoka also visited Kathmandu.
After defeating the last Kirati King, Gasti, the rule of Lichchhavi dynasty commenced in Nepal. The documented history of Nepal begins with this dynasty. Changu Narayan Temple which is one of the UNESCO world heritages presently has the inscription of King Manadeva who is of Lichchhavi dynasty. The inscription dates back to 5th century.
History of Nepal Lichchavi dynasty
In the early 7th century, Amshuverma took over the throne from his father in law who was from the Lichchhavi dynasty. He then started Thakuri dynasty in Nepal. King Amshuverma married his daughter Bhrikuti to famous Tibetan king, Tsong Tsen Gampo and established a good relationship with Tibet. Thakuri kings ruled over parts of the country till mid 12th century.
History of Nepal Thakuri dynasty
After the fall of Thakuri dynasty, Arideva founded Malla dynasty in Nepal in the 12th century. Mallas ruled in Nepal from 12th to 18th century. Their era was a golden age of creativity and many social and economic reforms took place. Monuments in Kathmandu enlisted as world heritages now were built during Malla dynasty. After about two centuries of a ruling, the kingdoms of Malla dynasty were disintegrated into small principalities. Baise and Chaubise Rajya had emerged. Later Malla dynasty starts with King Jayasthiti Malla in the 14th century. He also brought many reforms in the country. After his death, the valley was divided into 3 kingdoms, Kathmandu, Bhaktapur and Patan. This division led the Malla rulers into war for commercial gain and this war consequently weakened them. Around that time there was a Shan ruler in one of the principalities, Prithvi Narayan Shah. He invaded the valley, defeated Malla rulers and founded Shah Dynasty.
History of Nepal Shah Dynasty
King Prithvi Narayan Shah was a true nationalist. He had the attributes of foreseeability, diplomacy and valour. He saw the need to unify small principalities for the survival of the nation in the future. He set forth for this mission and occupied different small states creating a unified Nepal. Kathmandu became the capital of modern Nepal by 1979. The Shah Dynasty ruled in Nepal from 1769 to 2008.
History of Nepal Rana Regime
During mid 19th century, Jung Bahadur Rana became Nepal’s first prime minister to be at the helm of absolute power relegating Shah Kings to mere figureheads. The autocratic Rana regime lasted for 104 years.
Revolution of 1951 started when few educated people and marginalised Ranas were dissatisfied with the Rana rule. Many of these Nepalese in exile has taken part in Indian Independence and wanted to liberate Nepal as well. During the exile, the leaders like B.P. Koirala, Ganesh Man Singh, Girija Prasad Koirala, etc had already formed political parties like Prajaparishad and Nepali Congress. During the revolution, people like Dharma Bhakta Mathema, Shukraraj Shastri, Gangalal Shrestha and Dashrath Chand gained martyrdom. Due to this turmoil, King Tribhuvan fled from Nepal to India to revolt against the Rana regime. Eventually, Shah Family returned to power. Rana regime ended and non-Rana was appointed as Prime Minister of Nepal.
In early 1959, Tribhuvan’s son, King Mahendra issued a new constitution and 1st democratic election for national assembly was held. Nepali Congress Party won and their leader, BP Koirala formed the government and was instated as Prime Minister. However, this democracy was only short lived as by 1960, King Mahendra had already changed his mind. He dissolved the parliament and took direct control of the government. All the political parties were banned. In 1962, Partyless Panchayat form of government was established. In 1972, Mahendra was succeeded by King Birendra.
King Birendra paved the way for democracy by establishing multiparty parliament with King as the head of State and an executive Prime Minister. In May 1991, the 1st parliamentary election was held. However, Maoist party was against elected government and monarchy. People’s Movement started in 1990. In February 1996 Communist Party of Nepal started a violent insurgency in more than 50 districts of Nepal. It was a tough time and about 13000 police, civilian and insurgents were killed.
History of Nepal Royal Massacre
In 2001, 1st June the Royal Massacre took place which killed all the family of the then King Birendra leaving only Gyanendra behind. As per the culture, Gyanendra was crowned as the King of Nepal. For some time, he went to the multiparty parliament but later on, dismissed the elected parliament to wield absolute monarchy and power. This again completely made a change to the Nepal history and history of Nepal.
As a result, in 2006, another people’s movement was launched which was conducted jointly by the democratic parties. This led to 19 days curfew in Kathmandu and other areas. Then, 7 parties coalition resumed the control of government and King was stripped of most of his powers.
History of Nepal Comprehensive Peace Agreement
In 2006, November 25, Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koirala and Maoist Chairman, Prachanda signed Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) for maintaining peace in the country and to lead the country towards progression. The constituent Assembly election was held on April 10, 2008. On May 28, 2008, Nepal was declared as the Federal Democratic Republic.
Major parties, Maoists, Nepali Congress and UML agreed to write constitution replacing interim constitution by 2010. However, drafting of constitution languished for many years due to disputes between different parties.
History of Nepal devastating earthquake 7.8 Magnitude
In April 2015, the devastating earthquake of 7.8 magnitudes hit Nepal causing huge loss of lives, ravaging monuments and infrastructures. This created a sense of urgency among the political parties to expedite drafting of the constitution. Finally, the new constitution was promulgated on September 20, 2015.
History of Nepal local election 2019 2076
Presently, the head of the state is The President and Prime Minister heads the Government. Now, in 2019, the country is heading towards the new direction as preparations are being made for the election. The election is to be done in 3 levels: local, provincial and national and a full-fledged preparation is being done for the local level election as per now. Nepal is now holding first local elections after 20 years in the history of Nepal. Election Commission Nepal is the managing and conducting body of Nepal election 2076.