THE political transition in Nepal that would soon bring to an end years of unpopular rule by King Gyanendra and the centuries-old tradition of monarchy must be a sigh of relief. There would be hardly anyone who would be sorry to see the royal institution make a departure. On the contrary, according to political circles in the country, tens of thousands of people are expected to come out on the streets to celebrate the occasion. Yet in the midst of these developments there are fears that the situation might turn worse. The King has refused to vacate the palace and the government has warned that it might resort to force to throw him out. Considering the public sentiment and the need to prevent further destabilization, it is hoped that the King would surrender to the popular will and make a graceful exit, so to speak. During his reign, he had delivered nothing to better the lot of the miserable masses, except for strengthening his own rule. In 2006, he declared a state of emergency, dismissed the government and arrested a large number of politicians. In this backdrop, the country's condition kept on deteriorating. A majority of the people remained in the poverty trap while the concept of justice and civil liberties was virtually non-existent. The current shift from kingdom to republic is a big victory for the people. It is hoped that apart from its symbolic value the transformation would bring tangible change as well.