Supporters of the monarchy protested across Nepal on Wednesday against the arrest of former crown prince Paras Shah over an alleged shooting incident.

It was the first time a member of the Nepalese royal family has been arrested.

Paras, 38, was detained on attempted murder charges on Tuesday for allegedly opening fire at the daughter and son—in—law of Deputy Prime Minister Sujata Koirala. Media reports said Paras had started shooting while in an alcoholic stupor.

He was taken into custody in Pokhara, some 200 kilometres west of Kathmandu and flown to Chitwan, where the shooting incident reportedly took place, for further interrogation.

The pro-monarchy Rastriya Prajatanta Party called for a shutdown of Chitwan, along with a number of towns in the southern plains.

Supporters of Paras also halted transport on the East-West highway.

Police baton charged demonstrators in some parts of the country.

Officers arrested nine protestors late Tuesday in the capital for staging a torch rally demanding Paras’s release.

Police said they were preparing to take the statement of Koirala’s son—in—law Rubel Chaudhary, who told the media that Paras did not fire at him but pointed the gun at his forehead. The chief district officer of Chitwan was due to interrogate Paras on Wednesday.

The ruling Nepali Congress party issued a statement calling for action against Paras, but a number of fringe parties demanded his release and called for Mr. Chaudhary to be questioned.

“It is inappropriate that attempts are being made to politicize the incident instead of launching an independent probe,” Maoist spokesman Dinanath Sharma said.

Paras moved to Singapore in 2008 after the monarchy was abolished.

He returned to Nepal recently and has been involved in religious and social activities.

He made headlines several times for involvement in brawls and shooting incidents while he was still a crown prince. His father, Gyanendra Shah, stepped down in June 2008 after street protests ended 240 years of monarchy.

Gyanendra became king in 2001 after his nephew and then-crown prince Dipendra reportedly opened fire at a family gathering, killing nine people, including his father and mother, and fatally wounding himself.

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