Nepal Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal ‘Prachanda’ will travel to India on Wednesday on a four-day official visit for talks with his Indian counterpart Narendra Modi and other leaders to further strengthen the age-old, multifaceted and cordial ties, it was announced on Saturday.
This will be Prachanda’s first bilateral visit abroad after assuming office in December 2022.
Prachanda, 68, will be accompanied by his daughter Ganga Dahal. He is visiting India at the invitation of his Indian counterpart Prime Minister Modi, Nepal’s foreign ministry said.
He will lead a delegation comprising ministers, secretaries and senior government officials, he said in a statement.
During his visit, the prime minister is scheduled to pay a courtesy call on President Droupadi Murmu and Vice President Jagdeep Dhankhar.
Prachanda will hold delegation-level talks with Modi on June 1. The talks will be followed by a joint press meeting by the two prime ministers, it said, adding that Modi will host a luncheon in honor of his counterpart from Nepal and his delegation, the statement said.
This is the fourth visit of Prime Minister Prachanda to India as the Prime Minister of Nepal. The visit will further strengthen the age-old, multifaceted, and cordial relations between Nepal and India,” she said.
“The Prime Minister will address Nepal-India Business Summit in New Delhi jointly organized by the Federation of Nepalese Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FNCCI) and Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) and interact with business leaders of both countries,” it said.
Prachanda will interact with the Nepali community in India over a welcome reception being hosted by Ambassador of Nepal to India Shankar Prasad Sharma, the statement said.
The prime minister is also scheduled to visit Ujjain and Indore, Madhya Pradesh before returning to Kathmandu on June 3, it added.
The External Affairs Ministry in New Delhi said the visit continues the tradition of “regular high-level exchanges between India and Nepal in furtherance of our ‘Neighborhood First’ policy”.
“The bilateral relations between the two countries have significantly strengthened in the last few years in all areas of cooperation. This visit underscores the importance given by both sides in adding further momentum to the bilateral partnership,” he said in a statement.
India’s ‘Neighborhood First’ policy is an integral component of its foreign policy. The policy seeks to build cordial and synergetic relations with India’s South Asian neighbors in various areas such as economy, science and technology, research and education, among others.
Nepal is important for India in the context of its overall strategic interests in the region, and the leaders of the two countries have often noted the age-old “Roti Beti” relationship.
The country shares a border of more than 1,850 km with five Indian states – Sikkim, West Bengal, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand. Land-locked Nepal relies heavily on India for the transportation of goods and services.