In a move reflecting the longstanding close relations between Nepal and India, Nepal’s Prime Minister Pushpa Kumar Dahal, also known as Prachanda, is slated to visit India next week. The Nepali leader will be engaging in vital talks with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, a development set to further solidify the historically rich bond between the two neighboring nations.
Strengthening Historical Ties
The Nepalese foreign ministry confirmed the news in a statement released on Saturday. They expressed confidence that the visit will “further strengthen the age-old, multifaceted, and cordial relations between Nepal and India”. The bilateral relations between these nations have significantly bolstered in recent years across various sectors, a testament to India’s ‘Neighbourhood First’ policy.
The forthcoming journey marks Dahal’s inaugural foreign trip since his election to prime ministerial office in December 2022. Despite this being his first official trip in his current tenure, the 68-year-old ex-Maoist rebel leader has visited India thrice during his previous tenures as prime minister.
Deepening Interactions with Indian Leadership
Prachanda is also scheduled to meet with other influential Indian officials, including President Droupadi Murmu, indicative of the profound diplomatic links between New Delhi and Kathmandu. His visit aligns with a well-established convention of Nepali Prime Ministers choosing New Delhi as their first international destination upon taking office.
The four-day diplomatic sojourn commencing on May 31 will not only comprise key political meetings but will also include visits to cultural sites in the temple town of Ujjain and Indore. This diverse agenda highlights the broad and inclusive nature of the Indo-Nepali relationship, spanning from politics to culture.
Indian PM Modi has reciprocated these diplomatic efforts, having visited Nepal five times since his ascension to the Prime Minister’s office in 2014, with his most recent visit being in May 2022. The consistent high-level exchanges between the two countries underscore the significance of their bilateral ties and mutual commitment to regional cooperation and stability.