Nepal PM Prachanda likely to visit India on first foreign trip: Reports

KATHMANDU: Nepal Prime Minister Pushp Kamal Dahal is likely to visit India on his first foreign trip in late February or early March, Nepal-based media outlet The Kathmandu Post reported on Sunday.
Dahal’s visit will reportedly take place after the election of the new president, said the Nepal-based news agency quoting the two leaders of the CPN (Maoist Centre) who are familiar with the developments.
“However, if the Indian side insists on the visit before the new President is elected, the trip may even take place earlier,” one of them said.
The presidential election is scheduled for February since President Bidya Devi Bhandari’s tenure expires at the end of March. The election is held a month before the incumbent’s term expires, according to the constitution.
According to officials in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Nepali Embassy in Delhi, India’s foreign secretary Vinay Mohan Kwatra will visit Kathmandu to issue an invitation to the prime minister, most likely after January 26, which India marks as its Republic Day. The two parties would then discuss the visit and agree on a certain date. According to officials, the tone of the visit will be set by a series of bilateral mechanisms, the Kathmandu Post reported.
Dahal visited India last July at the request of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) national president JP Nadda. Dahal had previously met with India’s external affairs minister S Jaishankar, national security adviser Ajit Doval, and Union home minister Amit Shah.
Nepal Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal aka Prachanda won the vote of confidence in parliament with 268 votes in favour of his government and two against it. It is the first time in the history of Nepal’s parliament that any Prime Minister has secured more than 99 per cent votes in parliament.
Nepal President Bidya Devi Bhandari appointed CPN (Maoist Centre) chair Pushpa Kamal Dahal as prime minister on December 25 after he showed the support of 169 lawmakers.

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