July 21, 2024, Sunday
Nepal 1:37:26 pm

Prachanda’s India visit further delayed

The Nepal Weekly
May 2, 2023

Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal Prachanda’s proposed visit to India has been delayed further due to internal reasons, including the jolt in the recent by-polls, and it is unlikely that his first foreign visit will take place before June, said an aid to the Prime Minister.

This is the second time that Prachanda’s visit to India has been postponed due to internal reasons. The visit to India would have been his first foreign trip after he assumed charge as PM for the third time in December last year.

“The government is preparing to present its annual budget for the coming fiscal year towards May-end and the Prime Minister’s visit to India will take place only after that,” the top aide close to Prime Minister Prachanda said on Saturday.

Earlier, the government was busy preparing for Prachanda’s visit to India between May second and the third week.

The results of the recently concluded by-elections in the country have also compelled the 68-year-old Prime Minister to rethink the visit in order to maintain the political stability at home.

Out of three seats for which the by-elections were held this month, the ruling alliance lost two seats, one in Tanhu – 1 and the other in Chitawan – 2. Only Upendra Yadav, president of the Janata Samajwadi Party, managed to win in Bara – 2 with the backing of the ruling alliance.

Rashtriya Swotantra Party (RSP), which has won two seats in the by-election, has made it clear that in the present situation, it will not join the Prachanda-led government and it is reviewing its stance on whether to continue its support to the coalition government from outside or not.

Ravi Lamichhane, a TV journalist-turned-politician, won from Chitawan – 2 while well-known economist Swornim Wagle won from Tanhu – 1. The support from RSP with 21 seats in the House of Representatives will be crucial for the survival of the Prachanda-led government.

The victory for the newly formed RSP was a shameful defeat for the larger parties run by senior leaders. In both constituencies, the Nepali Congress had fielded its candidates with the backing of the ruling alliance.

Meanwhile, Foreign Minister N P Saud has said that the government is making major preparations to make Prachanda’s forthcoming India visit fruitful. He said the Nepal government wanted to make the visit fruitful, he told the state-run daily Gorkhapatra.

“We are working on a result-oriented schedule and grand preparations are underway so as to fix priorities,” he said. “Preliminary discussions among different ministries relating to the Prime Minister’s visit have been completed,” he pointed out.

Saud said the first phase of inter-ministerial discussion under his leadership has already concluded as part of the preparations.

“We will move ahead placing national interest at the focal point with a view to further strengthening our international relations,” said Saud.