India reaches out to new Nepal government

Kathmandu, Oct 12 (IANS) India’s Ambassador to Nepal Ranjit Rae on Monday held talks with the newly elected Nepalese Prime Minister K.P. Oli and discussed issues related to both countries.

There were also discussions on Oli’s visit to India and easing the supply of fuel and other essential commodities from India to Nepal.

India is the first country to reach out to the new communist prime minister at a time when ties between Nepal and India have been termed as “strained” and “difficult”, particularly after promulgation of the new constitution in Nepal last month.

While expressing reservations over some of the content of the constitution, India, as always, said that there should be broad-based consensus on the charter so that all types of stakeholders can own up it.

While congratulating Oli on being elected as the prime minister, Rae hoped that relations between Nepal and India will further strengthen during his tenure, said the prime minister’s private secretariat.

The ties between India and Nepal reached a low during a recent standoff after agitating Madhes-based political parties staged protest and demonstration at key Nepal-India entry points that made India cut off supplies of fuel and other commodities due to security reason.

The key priority of the new Nepal government is to take diplomatic initiatives with India to ease the supplies and resume talks with agitating parties so that normal supplies are restored, an official said.

The prime minister’s private secretariat said that Rae also assured Oli that obstruction on the border will be eased soon.

Oli received congratulatory message from Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi hours after his election on Sunday. Modi also invited him to visit India.

The Nepal prime minister said that he wants to see and develop better relations with India, with whom Nepal shares common culture and history.

A top government official said that Oli’s India visit is in an exploratory phase.

An Indian embassy statement said: “PM Oli says India-Nepal cooperation is to mutual benefit of both countries. He looks forward to an early visit to India.”

Oli said that India and Nepal are two countries but one society.

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