Kathmandu, Feb 9 (IANS) Visiting Indian External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and members of an all-party delegation on Tuesday paid courtesy calls on Nepal President Bidhya Devi Bhandari and Prime Minister K.P. Sharma Oli.
The Indian delegation — comprising National Security Advisor Ajit Doval, Congress leader and former union minister Anand Sharma, CPI-M general secretary Sitaram Yechury and Janata Dal-United chief Sharad Yadav — met the two leaders after paying homage to former prime minister Sushil Koirala who died on Tuesday.
They met Bhandari at the President’s Office and Oli at his official residence.
Bhandari told the Indian leaders that Nepal-India relationship was “very deep and intimate and transcends politics”.
In the meeting with the prime minister, Sushma Swaraj said that as soon as they heard the news about Koirala’s demise, an emergency meeting was called which decided to send the all-party delegation to Kathmandu to pay homage to the late Nepali Congress chief.
Receiving the Indian delegation, Oli said “India always stands by Nepal in its hour of grief”, which has been demonstrated time and again.
Gopal Khanal, the prime minister’s foreign affairs advisor, cited Oli as saying: “Your presence in this hour of grief also demonstrates that India is a friend during difficult times for Nepal.”
In the meeting between Oli and Sushma Swaraj, the two also discussed his upcoming India visit later this month.
“We are eager to welcome you in India and preparations of your India visit are underway,” Sushma Swaraj said in the meeting.
Oli expressed confidence that the differences in opinion about Nepal’s new Constitution will be sorted out during talks with the Madhesis and that the government will continue discussions with the agitating parties.
Sushma Swaraj returned to New Delhi later in the evening.