Indian Army chief meets Nepal PM Deuba

Visiting Indian Army chief, Gen Manoj Pande on Tuesday called on Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba on Tuesday during his five-day Nepal trip.

He was accompanied by Ambassador Naveen Srivastava and other delegation members, according to the Indian Embassy in Kathmandu.

General Pande briefed the Prime Minister on his engagements in Kathmandu and conveyed his personal gratitude for the warm hospitality extended by the government of Nepal, the embassy said in a statement.

He reaffirmed that he would work to further strengthen the defence cooperation between the two countries.

Earlier in the day, the Indian Army chief had visited Nepali Army Command and Staff College at Shivapuri and addressed the students and staff there.

On Monday, he was conferred the honorary rank of General of the Nepali Army by President Bidya Devi Bhandari.

He was honoured at a special ceremony at the President’s official residence ‘Shital Niwas’ in Kathmandu.

He was also presented with a sword and scroll during the function. The ceremony was attended by the Indian Ambassador and other senior officials of both the countries.

The practice follows a seven decade old tradition of conferring Army Chiefs of each other’s country with the honorary title. Commander-in-Chief, General K.M. Cariappa was the first Indian Army chief to be decorated with the title in 1950.

General Pande is scheduled to visit the Muktinath Temple located in Mustang district on Wednesday and on the same day, he will also visit the Mid Command Headquarters of the Nepali Army in Pokhara.

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