Patna seminar on Nepal concludes

PATNA: The three-day seminar "Towards a New Era in Nepal" concluded here today with participants expressing hope to broaden the understanding of multi faceted Nepal-India relations and prospects of further cooperation.

On the final day of the seminar, participants from India and Nepal discussed "1950 Peace and Friendship Treaty and Open Border - Asset or Liability”, “Role of Media and Civil Society in Shaping Public Perceptions” and "New Constitution -Addressing Federalism”.

Hari Sharma, political Advisor to President Dr Ram Baran Yadav chaired the first session while other two sessions were chaired by Himal Khabar Patrika editor Kanak Mani Dixit and Unified CPN-Maoist vice-chairman Dr Baburam Bhattarai respectively. Professor Anju Upadhyay who was among the Indian participants said it was a useful experience since it provided an opportunity to understand bilateral issues in an open atmosphere. She said she found discussions on the Treaty of 1950 to be very interesting.

Nepali participants Chandra Kishore Jha said the programme was an important opportunity for participants to broaden their understandings on issues that were of bilateral concerns. He said Nepali participants were of the view that the role of civil society and the media was important in bringing the political parties to a common platform so as to bring the peace process to a logical conclusion without any delay. But they maintained that their roles had not been as effective as was during the 2006 people's movement.

The programme was organised by the Embassy of India in Kathmandu.