Indian PM Modi lands in Kathmandu

Sergio Conner
May 12, 2018

Security has been beefed up in the federal capital in view of the two-day State visit by Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi. This is PM Modi's third visit to Nepal. Modi sent India's external affairs ministers to meet Oli even before he took power, and Oli too flew to India for an official visit a few weeks after becoming prime minister.

The Prime Minister flagged off the bus service after offering prayers at the Janaki temple, dedicated it to Hindu goddess Sita.

PM Modi was received by his counterpart Oli at famed 20 th century Ram Janaki Mandir in Nepal, where he offered special prayers. "We have been there for each other in the most hard of times", the PM said, stressing Nepal's top position in India's "Neighbourhood First" policy.

He will leave for Kathmandu later in the day to hold delegation level talks with Oli.

On May 12, Narendra Modi is scheduled to visit Muktinath temple at the foot of the Thorong La mountain pass in Mustang district.

"This will act as a foundation for our economic development, cultural ties and a strong people to people contact between the two nations".

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He said that the previous month he along with Prime Minister Oli inaugurated an Integrated check post at Beerganj. "King Janak & King Dashratha not only united Janakpur & Ayodhya but also united India & Nepal".

Modi will today also formally launch Nepal's biggest hydroelectric project, being built by an Indian company, as he seeks to regain ground in the Himalayan republic where China has made deep inroads.

The Ramayan Circuit is one among the 13 tourist circuits under the "Swadesh Darshan Scheme" of India.

Nepal was then in the midst of writing the constitution and the proposed visit to a Madhesi-dominated area had been viewed as an effort to meddle in the country's internal process, a suspicion that crystallised following the blockade the following year. This is a historic moment. Reports inform that a holiday has been declared in the province because of PM Modi's visit.

At a ceremony in Kathmandu, Modi and Oli pushed a button that opened the curtain on a plaque at the site of the 900 MW hydro-power project, formally marking the start of construction work there.

India's ambassador to Nepal Manjeev Singh Puri reportedly said that this visit will also expedite the building of a railway line between Raxaul and Kathmandu to integrate Nepal's railway network with India's large network.

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