About the Author

Dinesh Tripathi, LL.M is a human rights and constitutional lawyer in the Supreme Court of Nepal. Against King Gyanendra’s oppressive rule Mr. Tripathi filed a series of public interest law-suits to protect rule of law, defend individual liberty and challenge autocraticdirect rule of the king. He also represented and pleaded successfully to free more than 300 political detainees from the Supreme Court of Nepal. He mobilized national and International public opinion against absolute, direct and repressive rule of King Gyanendra. He is also a forceful proponent of voting rights for the Diaspora on the upcoming constitutional assembly election. His petition drive attracted thousands of signatures. He is a firm believer in the rule of law and constitutional democracy. Currently, he is trying to build international support and mobilize international public opinion in favor of human rights and a constitutional democracy in Nepal. He has published various articles and books including a book on international protection of human rights.


NEPAL: Risks and Challenges of Building a Democratic and Constitutional State

Nepal has had a turbulent history. Democracy and rule of law have not been allowed to take root. The military was used several times to dismantle the democratic institution as well as to suppress the democratic movement and aspirations of the Nepalese people. During 1960, King Mahendra used military power to dismantle the democratic process and institutions. He dissolved the elected parliament and acted against the mandate of the1950 revolution. He imposed his direct authoritarian rule through the help of the military.
All of the elected representatives, including the Prime Minister and his entire cabinet, were imprisoned. A party less authoritarian system was imposed in the country for 30years. King Mahendra was able to accomplish this through the direct mobilization of the military. The democratic aspirations of the people were always suppressed in Nepal by its rulers. Nepal has had a long and painful past of democratic struggle, facing several ups and downs through out its history. The desire for democracy, freedom, and liberty is deeply rooted in the hearts and minds of the Nepalese people, as they want to be governed under a rule of law and aspire to establish genuine democracy based on he notion of equality and justice.


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