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Aishwarya
Queen Consort of Nepal
Queen consort of Nepal
Tenure 31 January 1972 – 1 June 2001
(&0000000000000029.00000029 years, &0000000000000121.000000121 days)
Predecessor Queen Ratna
Successor Queen Komal
Spouse King Birendra of Nepal
Full name
Queen Aishwarya Rajya Laxmi Devi
Born 7 November 1949(1949-11-07)
Died 1 June 2001 (aged 51)

Aishwarya (7 November 1949 – 1 June 2001) was the Queen of Nepal from 1972 to 2001. She was the wife of King Birendra and the mother of Crown Prince Dipendra, Prince Nirajan, and Princess Shruti.

She hailed from the aristrocratic Rana family which had ruled Nepal for 104 years, being the oldest daughter of Gen. Kendra Shumsher Jang Bahadur Rana (1927-1982) and his wife Shree Rajya Laxmi Rana (1928-2005). Her family had been the effective rulers of Nepal until the 1950s and she was ever conscious of this fact. She was considered to be staunchly royalist, believing in the absolute power of the monarchy, while her husband was more open to democratic governance.

Due to her forceful nature and her impetuousness, she earned many enemies, most notably the leftist parties of Nepal. In 1998, a crowd threw stones at her and tight security measures had to be adopted for her future public appearances. Queen Aishwariya was considered to be the power behind her husband's throne and the real ruler of Nepal. Her royal aides were often directed to act on orders that best suited and were most likely to further her own political ambitions.

Due to her strong and domineering personality, Queen Aishwariya was often considered to be difficult and irascible. Many incidents were reported about her abrasive behavior, both in private and in public. Her royal aides were commanded to be attentive 24 hours a day and often sent to short detention facilities if the Queen was dis-satisfied with their work. One well-talked about incident involved one of her most highly decorated Generals, whose stars she grabbed and tossed because of her displeasure over his alleged disrespectfulness to her. Another incident involved her exile of Prince Dhirendra of Nepal, her husband's younger brother, from Nepal. Dhirendra had married her youngest sister, Prekshya, in 1973 and had three daughters with her. Notwithstanding this, he embarked on an affair with a British woman, Shirley Greaney, and expressed a desire to divorce his wife. When Prekshya confided in her sister, Aishwarya promptly intervened, stripped Dhirendra of his titles and possessions and forced him into exile. He was also told that Shirley Greaney was not welcome in Nepal.

Queen Aishwarya was shot dead along with her husband, King Birendra, her son, Prince Nirajan, her daughter, Princess Shruti, and seven other royal family members, by her own son Prince Dipendra, who was wearing military fatigues and wielding an assault rifle and a submachine gun. It is widely believed that the motive for the Queen's murder was her strong opposition to the Crown Prince's proposed marriage to Devyani Rana.

Source

Royal titles
Preceded by
Ratna
Queen Consort of Nepal
1972-2001
Succeeded by
Komal
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