Nepal’s Prime Minister, Pushpa Kamal Dahal, also known as Prachanda, is set to visit India on his first foreign trip since he took office in December 2016. The trip was previously postponed three times for various reasons. Prachanda believes that the visit will strengthen the relationship between Nepal and India and create opportunities for economic cooperation. The Prime Minister is likely to embark on May 31 for his four-day official visit to India, according to sources. Prachanda has broken tradition by visiting China first during his first tenure as Prime Minister in 2008.
During an interaction with Kantipur Daily newspaper, Prachanda said that Nepal has made “good preparations” for his upcoming visit to India, and that he believes the visit will create new history in bilateral ties. Although there is no legal or political compulsion to visit India first, tradition dictates that Nepal’s Prime Minister should do so, due to the open border and the unique relationship between the two countries. Prachanda chose to visit India first because of necessity and appropriateness.
Responding to a question on media reports regarding the BJP providing funds to some of the Nepalese leaders to promote the Hindu religion, Prachanda responded that this was a very sensitive issue. He said that the government is taking this issue seriously and that there is a need to build some kind of common understanding with New Delhi in this regard.