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WORLD NEWS | Nepal PM Pushpa Kamal Dahal’s visit to India strengthens ancient ties


Nepal’s Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal (Photo/ANI)

New Delhi [India]June 3 (ANI): Nepal’s Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal “Prachanda” started a four-day visit to New Delhi on May 31 in an important diplomatic step. step.

The Prime Minister of Nepal will take office in December 2022. The decision to make India his first foreign destination underscores the historical ties between the two countries and marks a change from his previous stance. Widely considered by many to be a pro-China figure, Prachanda’s visit to India delivered a poignant message, underscoring the enduring ties between Nepal and its closest and most powerful partner.

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Since taking power in December 2022, Prachanda has stressed that the new government will follow a “balanced and trustworthy” relationship with India and will not undertake any major shifts in either country.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi took the lead in congratulating Pushpa Kumar Dahal on forming a government and expressing the friendly relations between the two countries. The two sides pointed out that there is a natural affinity between the two countries, the bilateral relationship is very strong, and both sides expressed excitement about the cooperation.

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Nepalese Prime Minister Dahal’s visit aims to strengthen the long-standing multifaceted relationship between the two countries, emphasizing the commitment to mutual respect, cooperation and sovereign equality. The strong religious, cultural, economic and political ties between India and Nepal go back centuries.

The two countries not only have an open border, but the people of the two countries have always been unimpeded, and the fate has been formed by marriage. Despite Nepal’s enormous strategic importance in India’s geopolitical and security calculations, India has never viewed its relationship with Nepal from such a narrow perspective.

On the contrary, India’s engagement in Nepal is influenced by its “Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam” principle and “neighborhood first” policy. In this regard, India’s main focus is on promoting Nepal’s development through infrastructure assistance and grants, fostering cultural ties and improving human development indicators, and supporting Nepal during adversity such as the 2015 earthquake.

India is already cooperating with Nepal on various development projects. The project to build the Ramayana circuit has linked various sites in the two neighboring countries. Prime Minister Narendra Modi laid the foundation stone for an Indian monastery during his last visit.

Infrastructure and other collaborations are also emerging. Nepal proposes India to undertake Nepal’s flagging West Seti hydropower project. In the field of education, IIT Madras and Kathmandu University collaborated to offer a joint degree programme, while the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) and Lumbini Buddhist University decided to establish Dr Ambekar’s Chair in Buddhist Studies.

The hydropower industry has become a strong pillar of cooperation between India and Nepal and is seen as a stimulant to boost bilateral relations. In recent years, India has begun to give priority to the development of this field.

The 900 MW Arun III project, developed by a subsidiary of Satluj Jal Vidyut Nigam (SJVN), is advancing at a faster pace. India has also provided assistance to Nepal, which signed an agreement with India’s National Hydropower Private Limited (NHPC Ltd) to develop the 750 MW West Seti project, which was put on hold by a Chinese company, citing financial inconvenience. The 900MW Upper Karnali project was also undertaken by India’s GMR Company.

Nepal has started exporting electricity to India again since last week, as Nepal’s power surplus is usually achieved when the country’s monsoon begins. Nepal has exported about 600 MWh of electricity to India since last Saturday.

It is worth noting that during the period from June 2022 to December 2022 alone, Nepal earned 11 billion Nepalese Nepalese by exporting hydropower to India. Nepal has also proposed a 25-year bilateral agreement on power trade that would replace the current annual renewal system, which creates inefficiencies and uncertainty about trade prospects.

Responding to Nepal’s concerns over India’s growing trade deficit, Nepal’s Prime Minister Prachanda has demanded non-reciprocal market access for Nepal’s agricultural products and simplified rules of origin for other commodities.

The two leaders discussed the establishment of testing laboratories and the formalization of arrangements for mutual recognition of test certificates. Pushpa Kamal Dehal also urged the removal of anti-dumping duties on Nepalese jute products, stressing the importance of creating a favorable trading environment.

Before arriving in India, Dahal approved the draft project development agreement, which will enable the third project on the Arun River, following the 900 MW Arun-III and 695 MW Arun-IV hydropower projects. The three projects will generate nearly 2,300 megawatts of electricity from the rivers in the Sankhuwasabha district.

Relations between India and Nepal go beyond mere diplomatic relations; they are based on mutual respect, sovereign equality, shared history and strong cultural ties. India’s strong commitment to a non-reciprocal policy towards Nepal further underscores the deep-rooted civilizational and long-standing traditional ties between the two countries.

Foreign Secretary Vinay Kwatra’s recent visit to Nepal is a testament to the priority India places on nurturing and strengthening ties with Nepal. As the journey of collaboration and cooperation continues, India and Nepal are ready to steer the future together, forging a bond based not only on strategic interests but also on shared values ​​and aspirations of people-to-people exchanges between the two countries. (Arnie)

(This is an unedited and auto-generated story from a Syndicated News feed, the body of content may not have been modified or edited by LatestLY staff)


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