India's contribution towards Nepal development will continue: Modi

April 8, 2018-Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli has returned home completing his three-day state visit to neighbouring India. We wish to take forward our relationship on the basis of goodwill, mutual trust and mutual benefit, he said. "With our neighbours, particularly with India, we first expect friendship". We will never let our land to be used against sovereign India.

Nepal shares a 1,850-kilometer (1,150-mile) open border with India, which is also the Himalayan country's largest trading partner. "The wonderful journey of India as an economic powerhouse is inspiring for people around the world". In a rare gesture, Modi sent Sushma Swaraj, India's external affairs minister, to Kathmandu to congratulate Oli and convey India's willingness to work with his government, even before Oli had become prime minister for the second time. The Prime Minister of Nepal noted the enormous impact the additional connectivity would have on the growth of business and economy of Nepal.

Oli's three-day visit is in line with the tradition of a Nepalese premier visiting India on his first overseas trip. "Our relations has to be expanded and consolidated and to not limit its scope".

Setting aside concerns over Nepal awarding key development projects to rival China, PM Modi said India will continue to support Nepal on the country's priorities even as both sides have agreed to expedite all connectivity projects. "Nepal will have power surplus in wet season and deficit in dry season for a few years to come whereas India needs more power in summer".

He said, "Our economy can not sustain an alarmingly high trade imbalance with India. We also discussed about development of new transmission lines", Oli said.

"We must seize the opportunity to make our relations fruitful to the lives of our peoples".

He made a pitch for more businesses to invest in Nepal, while telling the Nepalese diaspora in Delhi that he would "build an environment" that would help attract them back home as well. Mr Oli also underlined the importance of regional and sub-regional cooperation for the common prosperity of the people of the region.

There were indications that India was losing its leverage in Nepal and it became more apparent after the victory of the left alliance in the general elections following which Oli was sworn in as the Prime Minister.

Important agreements were also held on the support required by Nepal to achieve prosperity and realize its slogan of "happy Nepalis, prosperous Nepal". The directors of the Foundation include several union ministers, BJP ideologues and other distinguished persons, including Suresh Prabhu, Nirmala Sitharaman, M. J. Akbar, Jayant Sinha, Swapan Das Gupta, A. Surya Prakash, Sunaina Singh, Ram Madhav Varanasi, and Dhaurya Doval (son of NSA Ajit Doval).

  • Zachary Reyes