India to export food grains to Nepal

NEW DELHI: A day after India pledged to build multi-billion infrastructure projects in Nepal and provide a line of credit worth USD 250 million, it has also offered to supply 50,000 tonnes of wheat, 20,000 tonnes of rice, 10,000 tonnes of yellow peas (Dal) to Nepal, sources at the Ministry of External Affairs said, adding that 2,000 tonnes of wheat could be delivered extra if need be.

India’s offer to supply the said quantities of food grain is believed to enable Nepal to avert a food shortage — a concern that Nepali ministers have been expressing in the past few months.

Samajwadi Party president Mulayam Singh Yadav, CPI General Secretary AB Bardhan, INC General Secretary Janardhan Dwivedi, Dr Karan Singh met President Dr Ram Baran Yadav here today and discussed issues of mutual interest with the visiting dignitary.

All the Indian leaders inquired about the ongoing peace process, and challenges to write the new constitution within the prescribed deadline of May 28, according to Minister for Tourism and Civil Aviation Sharat Singh Bhandari. He said that the Indian leaders told the President that peace and stability

in Nepal, which shares open border with India, were also in the interest

of the southern neighbour so they wanted to see

a new constitution being framed on time as per the popular mandate. Almost all Indian leaders that met the President today told the latter that they wanted to see Nepal emerge as a peaceful and politically stable country.

The president also attended a banquet dinner hosted by Nepal’s Ambassador to India Rukma Shamsher Rana at the Taj Hotel. Earlier, the President visited religious city of Haridwar and met Dudhari Baba, whom he has

known from his college days in Kolkata. The president also met Pilot Baba and Baba Ramdev and sought their blessings for peace and tranquillity in the country, according to Minister Bhandari.

According to another member of the entourage, the president requested Baba Ramdev to come to Nepal to spread the message of peace, tolerance and brotherhood.

The President also offered prayers in the famous Hindu shrines and performed pujas on the bank of the Ganges. The President was supposed to fly to the holy city of Haridwar at 8 in the morning but the flight was delayed by three hours due to bad weather.