The Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal is a landlocked sovereign country located mainly in the Himalayas in South Asia. It is bordered by India to the south, west, and east, and Tibet to the north. Nepal is the host to the world’s highest elevations such as Mount Everest. It also has a variety of biomes and a diverse bio-culture.
Nepal is among the fastest-growing economies in the world with major industries focused on tourism, textiles, carpets, cigarettes, brick, cement, jute, small rice, oilseed mills, and sugar.
Since 1932, the country has been using the Nepalese rupee as its monetary unit, replacing the Nepalese mohar. The Nepal Rastra Bank which is Nepal’s central bank is responsible for the issuance of Nepalese rupee banknotes. Prior to the establishment of the central bank, banknotes during the rule of King Tribhuvan were issued by the Government of Nepal through the Treasury.
In 1960, banknotes were issued highlighting a portrait of King Mahendra who took over his father, King Tribhuvan, on March 13, 1955. The next series was released in 1969 which highlights a new picture of King Mahendra wearing a summer military dress and a cap. When King Mahendra was replaced by his son King Birendra, a new family of notes depicting King Birendra in a royal dress and a cap was introduced. On the 1981 -2001 issues, the portrait was replaced with a new picture of Birendra wearing a royal dress and a plumed crown.
In 1992, the bank issued another set of notes bearing similar designs as the preceding issues but with a windowed security thread. Another family of notes was released between 2000 and 2001, carrying a portrait of King Birendra on a larger scale, a wider windowed security thread, and a watermark that reflects the king.
The 2002 - 2004 issues of the Nepalese rupee feature King Gyanendra who took over the throne after the death of his new, King Dipendra. In 2007, new notes were released without the name, royal symbols, and portrait of King Gyanendra. Since some notes were ordered before the king’s status was brought down to ceremonial monarch, officials of the Nepal Rastra Bank obscured the image of the king by printing the watermark area with the national flower. Eventually, starting on the 2008 - 2012 issues, the notes portray Mount Everest and the watermark reflects the national flower of Nepal.