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India-Nepal ties back on track, says Nepal Deputy PM

New Delhi, June 10:  Bilateral relations between India and Nepal are now back on track after recent hiccups and the Himalayan tion now looks to its southern neighbour to play a major role in consolidation of the political change that it has adopted, Nepal Deputy Prime Minister Kamal Thapa said here on Friday. “India has been a valued partner in Nepal’s democratic transition,” said Thapa while delivering a talk on “Current developments in Nepal and India-Nepal relations” at the Observer Research Foundation here. Thapa said India-Nepal relations are “unique and special” and one should not compare Nepal’s foreign policy vis-a-vis India and Chi — its respective southern and northern neighbours. “It cannot be same. Each tion has its own character and so the foreign policy will change accordingly,” he said.

Thapa, who is also the foreign minister of Nepal, said Nepal was keen to derive maximum benefit from the two large global economies surrounding it — that of Chi and India. India has already emerged as one of the fastest developing economies in the world, he pointed out. “The misunderstandings of the recent past have been resolved and we are back on track… as many as 13 bilateral meetings lined up during June-July are proof that relations are good,” Thapa earlier told media persons here at an interaction co-organised by the South Asian Women in Media and the South Asian Free Media Association. In the run-up to the promulgation of Nepal’s federal constitution in September last year — and for a considerable period thereafter — relations between Kathmandu and New Delhi soured after a wide section of population in Nepal’s southern plains, the Terai or the Madhes, launched an agitation claiming that the new charter was discrimitory. Thapa, here on a three-day visit — his fifth in the last eight months — sought to make clear that the new constitution was dymic and ameble to change if it was so desired. (IANS)

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Ankur Kalita