Of the slain Royals and the People

If you are active on social media for past few years, you might not have missed this. The fortnight containing June 1st, for past decade, is always spent talking about the Royal family that was slain on 1st June, 2001.

The form of social media has changed, from msn messenger to hi5 to facebook to twitter, but the talk has not. Come June 1 and the old pictures of the then Royal family – with a tagline saying ‘rare’ – appears everywhere. It has hardly diminished, even as the years tend to deform memories. If facebook and twitter are any indicators, one gets the feeling that the respect for that family has only turned into reverence.

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The Royal story: A decade and counting…

The story begins in 2001…
The Information:
Yours truly got a call just a couple of hours after midnight from a friend. You never feel good getting a call before dawn, unless you’re in your prime teenage. The phone ring is always eerie (mobile phones were not in the range of entry-level job holders then), if you’ve just hit the best part of the sleep. And it was a male friend. Nothing friendly about the call, no greetings exchanged. A shock: “Did you hear about what happened at the palace?” Now you don’t expect a Royal palace to be a topic of ice breaker, that too, at such a time.
That’s enough to dispel thoughts about your friend being lunatic, because he’s a fellow journalist. Journalism is a serious business. A year into journalism – that too in the country’s best read English daily – makes you feel that you have to be an expert on whatever happens in the known universe (although I was primarily supposed to be know-all in Sports). The news was sketchy and we did not really figure out at the moment that we were talking of a massacre. The sleep, that had started only a few hours ago was nowhere in sight. After all, it was an issue about the Royals. And then you think, you were near the place of incident (Thamel), only a few hours ago. “How did I miss something then?”, a question makes rounds in your head. No answers.