Mukherjee to visit Lumbini, Janakpur during Nepal trip

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Kathmandu, Oct 5 (IANS) Indian President Pranab Mukherjee will visit Lumbini, Janakpur and Pokhara during his three-day Nepal visit from November 2, a media report said.

Besides his official engagements in Kathmandu, the visiting President will meet several Nepalese political leaders and others.

Janakpur is a revered religious site for Hindus while Lumbini is the birthplace of Buddha. Pokhara is a scenic tourist city famous for its lakes and is the second largest city in Nepal.

The President will first visit Janakpur and return to Kathmandu. He will later visit Pokhara and Lumbini, the Kathmandu Post reported. Mukherjee will spend a night in Pokhara.

Earlier, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi had also expressed his wish to visit Janakpur, Lumbini and Mukti Nath during the 18th Saarc Summit in Nepal but the scheduled visits were cancelled due to some reasons.

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Mukherjee’s visit to Nepal in November will be first by an Indian president in almost two decades. The then Indian President K.R. Narayanan visited Nepal in 1997.

After Mukherjee’s visit, Nepal President Bidhya Devi Bhandari will embark on a state visit to India, the officials had said earlier.

In February, the then Nepal Prime Minister K.P. Sharma Oli, during his India visit, had extended an invitation on behalf of President Bhandari to Mukherjee to visit the Himalayan nation.

In May, the Oli government had abruptly cancelled Bhandari’s scheduled visit to India due to “lack of preparations and pressing domestic issues”. As a result, uncertainty hung over the Indian President’s visit to Nepal.



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