Nepal set to welcome Prime Minister Narendra Modi

Vastavam web: Nepal is all set to welcome Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who is arriving in the country tomorrow for a two-day state visit during which he will hold talks with the top leadership here with a focus on implementing key India-assisted projects and building mutual trust.This will be the third visit of Prime Minister Modi to Nepal and the first high-level visit from India since the formation of the new Government in Nepal.

He will start his visit from the historic city of Janakpur, the birthplace of Sita, tomorrow morning. In Janakpur, Modi will visit 20th century Janaki temple and offer special prayers. Later, Prime Minister Modi will be accorded a civic reception by the Janakpur Sub-Metropolitan City at Barhabigha ground.In the afternoon, the Prime Minister will fly to the capital, Kathmandu, where he will be given a guard of honour by the Nepal Army.

Welcome gates with pictures of Modi and his Nepalese counterpart KP Oli have been installed at different places on the way to the main city area from the Tribhuvan International Airport. Roads have been decorated with flags of Nepal and India. The prime minister will call on Vice President Nanda Bahadur Pun and President Bidya Devi Bhandari in the afternoon. On Saturday, Prime Minister will visit historic Muktinath temple in Mustang district situated in north-west Nepal to offer prayers Modi will attend a reception hosted by Ambassador Puri in his honour.

Leaders of various political parties in the country will call on Prime Minister Modi in Kathmandu. Oli on Tuesday held discussions with former prime ministers and former foreign ministers about Modi’s visit. He briefed them about issues to be taken up with Modi and solicited their advice. Oli also informed Parliament about the visit.Official sources in New Delhi earlier said that during Modi’s two-day visit, India will seek to consolidate relationship with the new Nepalese government headed by Oli who has returned to power riding on a spectacular electoral victory and now leads a stable dispensation after years of political instability.

The aim will also be to bring “substance” and “seriousness” in ties, a source said, while expressing the hope that “it will further build trust between the two neighbours”. They said both sides will deliberate on the implementation of the ambitious rail project to link Kathmandu with Raxaul in Bihar and connecting landlocked Nepal with river transport system with India, apart from several other key connectivity projects.Nepalese PM Oli had visited India around a month back which was seen as an attempt to repair Nepal’s ties with New Delhi. In 2016, Oli had publicly criticised India for interfering in Nepal’s internal matters and accused it of toppling his government over the issue of Madhesis, who are mostly of Indian-origin.

Modi and Oli are likely to sign a number of pacts and inaugurate the Rs 6000-crore Arun 3 project which is expected to generate around 900 MW of power.