Indian prime minister arriving in Janakpur today
KATHMANDU: Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi will arrive in Janakpur today on a two-day state visit to Nepal at the cordial invitation of Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli.
This will be Modi’s third visit to Nepal since 2014, and follows the state visit of Oli to India last month. Modi had earlier travelled to Nepal for a bilateral visit in August 2014 and for the SAARC Summit in November 2014.
In a Facebook post on Thursday, Modi said his third Nepal visit as India’s prime minister reflected the high priority India, and he himself, attached to the age-old, close and friendly ties with Nepal. “These high-level and regular interactions reflect my government’s commitment to the ‘Neighbourhood First’ policy, in consonance with the motto of ‘Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas’,” said Modi in the Facebook post.
“As Nepal enters a new era of consolidating gains of democracy and achieving rapid economic growth and development, India will continue to remain a steadfast partner of the Government of Nepal to implement its vision of ‘Samriddha Nepal, Sukhi Nepali’. I am confident that my visit will further cement our people-centric partnership with Nepal on the basis of mutual benefit, goodwill and understanding.”
During the visit, the two prime ministers will remotely lay the foundation stone of the 900 MW Arun-III hydropower project and inaugurate the Ramayana Circuit and Janakpur-Ayodhya direct bus service.
According to officials, agreements are expected on the implementation of the Kathmandu-Raxaul railway, inland waterways and partnership in farm modernisation. The two sides had announced agreements on the three areas during Oli’s state visit to India last month.
Modi also stated in his Facebook post: “Prime Minister Oli and I will have the opportunity to take forward our recent wide-ranging discussions in New Delhi on issues of mutual interest, and to advance our cooperative partnership across diverse sectors.”
The officials said bilateral discussions would focus on expediting the implementation of past agreements reached between the two countries, adding the Nepali side would also raise issues related to flooding in the Tarai region and opening of new air routes, among other regular issues, such as trade and transit, trade deficit and demonetisation.
Modi, who will kick off his Nepal trip from Janakpur, will also visit Muktinath, besides Kathmandu. “In addition to Kathmandu, I am also looking forward to visiting Janakpur and Muktinath. Both these places attract a large number of pilgrims every year. They are living testimony to the ancient and strong cultural and religious ties between the peoples of India and Nepal,” Modi stated in the Facebook post.
In Kathmandu, Modi will also meet leaders of political parties, besides paying courtesy calls on President Bidhya Devi Bhandari and Vice-president Nanda Bahadur Pun.
- Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi will land at Janakpur airport on Friday morning where he will be welcomed by Defence Minister Ishwar Pokhrel and Province 2 Chief Minister Mohammed Lal Babu Raut Gaddi
- He will then reach Janaki temple where he will offer puja for around six minutes. Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli will also be travelling to Janaki temple on Friday. The two prime ministers will inaugurate the Ramayana Circuit and the direct bus service from Janakpur to India’s Ayodhya
- Oli will fly back to Kathmandu after the Janaki temple programme, while Modi will attend a civic reception hosted by Janakpur Sub Metropolitan City at Baarhabigha ground in his honour. The event is expected to last for around an hour
- Modi will then fly to Kathmandu in the afternoon, where he will be welcomed by Foreign Minister Pradeep Kumar Gyawali
- After resting for a while at Hyatt Regency, where he will be staying, Modi will witness guard of honour at Tundikhel. He will then call on President Bidhya Devi Bhandari and Vice-president Nanda Bahadur Pun
- The two prime ministers will then hold bilateral talks at Dwarika’s Hotel, followed by a joint press conference and remote inauguration of Arun-III hydropower project. Modi’s engagements for Friday will conclude after he attends a dinner hosted in his honour by Oli at Dwarika’s
- On Saturday morning, Modi will visit Muktinath. He will offer prayers at Pashupatinath temple after his return from Muktinath. This will be followed by meeting with leaders of political parties of Nepal. Before departing for India the same day, Modi will attend a civic reception hosted by Kathmandu Metropolitan City at Rastriya Sabha Griha