India’s goodwill always with Nepal, say Indian prez, PM

  • President Bhandari holds important bilateral meetings in Delhi on second day of her visit
- KAMAL DEV BHATTARAI, NEW DELHI

Apr 19, 2017-Indian president and prime minister on Tuesday said that India appreciated efforts being made by Nepal to implement the constitution and hold local polls accommodating all sections of the society. 

During a meeting between President Bidya Devi Bhandari and her Indian counterpart Pranab Mukherjee in New Delhi, the Indian head of state said that India “is always in favour of peace, stability and development in Nepal”. 

“The Indian president appreciated the efforts being made by the incumbent government to hold local elections accommodating all sections of the society,” a senior official present in the meeting quoted Mukherjee as saying. 

President Bhandari arrived in New Delhi on Monday on a five-day state visit to the southern neighbour at the invitation of Mukherjee. 

The two presidents also discussed ways to enhance bilateral relations between the two countries, the official added.  

Earlier in the day, Bhandari held talks with Indian Prime Minister Modi.

“India always stands with you, and we are supportive of your every endeavour,” Foreign Minister Prakash Sharan Mahat quoted Modi as saying in the meeting

According to an official present in the meeting, Modi assured Bhandari that his goodwill would always remain with Nepal for its peace, stability and development. “The ‘Collective Efforts Inclusive Growth’ is not limited to India only, it is for neighbouring countries as well,” the official quoted Modi. 

President Bhandari had informed Modi about the Nepal government’s plan of holding three levels of elections in the coming days for the implementation of the constitution. President Bhandari also told Modi that Nepal needed India’s goodwill to complete the constitution implementation process and embark on the journey of economic development. 

“We are honoured to welcome President Bidya Devi Bhandari of Nepal. Had fruitful talks with her,” Modi tweeted in the evening.   

On Tuesday itself, India’s Minister for External Affairs Sushma Swaraj, Minister for Home Affairs Rajnath Singh and Finance Minister Arun Jaitley called on President Bhandari. 

According to Foreign Minister Mahat, Swaraj stated that “India attaches high priority to cooperative relations with Nepal”. “Swaraj said that Indian Prime Minister Modi himself is very interested to complete the ongoing development projects in Nepal,” said Mahat. Home Minister Singh focused on bilateral cooperation including in the area of security and stated that India would always be supportive in Nepal’s 

progress and prosperity.

An official, however, told the Post on condition of anonymity that the Indian leaders refrained from discussing elections and the demands of the Madhes-based parties. “The Indian home minister, however, had sought to know whether the elections would happen,” the official said. 

Earlier in the morning, President Bhandari was given a ceremonial guard of honour at the Rashtrapati Bhawan where Mukherjee and Modi welcomed her. 

Published: 19-04-2017 07:32

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