EDITORIAL: Close ties

Bilateral relations have been restored to pre-constitution level due to exchanges of high level visits from both the sides after the promulgation of the constitution

Indian President Pranab Mukherjee is on a three-day state-visit at the invitation of Nepal’s President Bidhya Devi Bhandari who received him at the VVIP lounge upon his arrival at the Tribhuvan International Airport on Wednesday.

He is the first Indian President to pay a state-visit after a gap of 18 years. RK Narayan was the last Indian President to visit Nepal in May 1998. Besides holding talks with Nepal’s President, the visiting dignitary also met Vice-President Nanda Bahadur Pun, Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal and other top leaders of various political parties.

He is also scheduled to visit the religious town of Janakpur and the Lake City of Pokhara on Friday from where he will return home on a special flight. During talks with President Bhandari at Sital Niwas, the visiting Indian dignitary congratulated the Nepali people and the Constituent Assembly for promulgating the new constitution of Nepal last year and its “subsequent amendment”.

He also reiterated the earlier invitation to President Bhandari to visit India at her earliest convenience.

Giving his banquet speech at Hotel Soaltee the Indian President said that India “attaches highest priority” to its relations with its neighours, particularly Nepal, as the two neighbours have the closest fraternal ties. President Mukherjee also called on the Nepali people to be a part of India’s “growth story,” saying that “together we can and must achieve the full potential of our ever-expanding mutually beneficial cooperation”.

He also appreciated the “enterprise and achievements” of the people of Nepal in their quest for peace, stability, progress and all-round development. He said the Nepali people sought to implement a constitution that responds to the needs of their diverse social fabric.

He also termed Nepal-India relation as “historical and civilisational” and said that the two countries have a stake in each other’s well-being and prosperity. President Bhandari during her welcome speech also said that Nepal was keen to further expand and enhance bilateral economic relations.

Indian President Mukherjee’s visit to Nepal holds special significance at a time when the bilateral relations between the two closest neighbours had reached the lowest level in a decade, due to the undeclared blockade, after Nepal promulgated the new constitution on September 20, 2015.

It all happened thanks to political misunderstanding between the two sides. However, the bilateral relations have now been restored to the pre-constitution level due to exchanges of high level visits from both the sides after the promulgation of the new constitution.

The Indian President’s visit to Nepal has further enhanced the age-old relations that will pave the way for peace, stability and prosperity in Nepal.

India’s goodwill and cooperation in the development projects jointly undertaken by both the countries will be vital for Nepal’s peace, stability and prosperity. The southern neighbour’s goodwill will be more vital in implementing the constitution by holding three tiers of elections by January 2018.

In order to achieve this goal, the Nepal government, political parties and Parliament must hold meaningful dialogues with the disgruntled political parties to bring them on board the election processes that will help consolidate the hard-earned federal and democratic set up.

The Indian President has also “appreciated” the Nepal government’s efforts made to address concerns of the agitating forces.

Sale of antibiotics

Antibiotics are being sold by many pharmacies without the prescription of medical practitioners. Their sale should be monitored as this is an unhealthy practice.

Thus, it indeed is fitting for the Department of Drug Administration to ban the sale of antibiotics without the required prescription. The practice of using antibiotic without prescriptions is dangerous.

Moreover, the irrational use of antibiotics could have serious repercussions. Many people buy these drugs without consulting doctors which can lead to dangerous consequences.

The pharmacists are found to be giving antibiotics which they are not supposed to the people seeking medicines for their various ailments.

There is a danger that the excessive use of these drugs will give rise to various complications that also include drug resistance. This resistance could prove to be harmful because they would require stronger antibiotics to work.