Two crucial translated sections from Rookmangud Katawal’s memoir :
“Your king is a liar,” British ambassador Bloomfield told me one day.
I could not accept such things being said about our head of state and supreme commander. I shot back: “How could you ever say that about my king?”
Bloomfield repeated even more tersely: “He is not fit to be king.”
The exchange went on for a while, but I could not convince the ambassador. None of the Kathmandu-based envoys were for an active monarchy, so they were not welcome in the palace.
But the people surrounding King Gyanendra, and those who were using his power, did not warn the King that he was losing international support. At a time when he should have been showing some flexibility, the King had become more rigid.
I tried to convince the Chief several times to take the message to the King that he should meet the NC and UML, which still had popular support. He never replied.
3 May 2009
“We are not going to surrender. No way” I told President Ram Baran Yadav’s adviser. “I don’t want to do anything unpleasant myself. My legitimacy finishes by 12 midnight.”
At about 11PM, the President called.
“Do I have to put it in writing?” The President asked. “Can’t I not write it?”
I replied: “If it is not in writing, there will be a question of legitimacy. A letter would resolve the issue.”
By then, KP Oli had got to the palace despite his health problems, and called to say the President had decided to send the letter and to inform all the generals.
A few minutes later, the fax arrived, reinstating the Chief of Army Staff. It was a clear and direct letter, just as we wanted. Soon after, my mobile and all the landlines started ringing off the hook.
The needle on my watch approached midnight. But I wasn’t sleepy, I went out to meet my soldiers outside.