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Nepal gears up for wedding

Kathmandu, Jan. 21 (Reuters): Nepali palace workers were busy putting final touches today on arrangements for the Himalayan kingdom’s biggest social event in years — the marriage of King Gyanendra’s only daughter to a commoner.

Tomorrow’s marriage of Princess Prerna, 24, to Raj Bahadur Singh, 29, a University of California computer graduate, will be a chance for celebration in Nepal still reeling from a royal massacre in 2001 and facing a deadly Maoist revolt.

The Narayanhity palace, where then crown Prince Dipendra gunned down his parents and seven other royals, has been given a fresh lick of pale blue paint for the arranged marriage. A flower-festooned dais has been set up on the palace lawns where King Gyanendra will give away the bride to the groom in an elaborate Hindu ceremony.

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