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Koirala, Girija Prasad

Girija Prasad Koirala (gĬrē´jə präsäd´ koirä´lä), 1925–2010, Nepalese political leader. He grew up in N India, where his family lived in exile. He helped found the Nepal Trade Union Congress and worked as labor organizer; he also was active in the Nepali Congress party. His brother Matrika Prasad Koirala was the first commoner to serve as prime minister, holding the office twice in the 1950s, and another brother, Bisheshwar Prasad Koirala, served as prime minister in Nepal's brief first democratically elected government (1959–60). G. P. Koirala, who was a member of parliament, was imprisoned (1960–68) following the royal coup that ended B. P. Koirala's government and later went into exile. Returning to Nepal in 1979, he became prime minister (1991–94) after free elections were held. Accused at times of corruption and mismanagement, he again led governments in 1998–99, 2000–2001, and 2006–8. His last government, during which he also served for six months (2007–8) as acting head of state, shepherded Nepal from a monarchy to a republic, and negotiated a peace agreement (2006) with Maoist rebels that ended a decade of strife.

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