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Nepal PM Deuba set to begin four-day visit to India from Sunday

India and Nepal to enhance connectivity, all eyes on Nepal PM Deuba's visit to New Delhi (Pic: Twitter)

Ahead of Nepal Prime Minster Sher Bahadur Deuba's four day visit to India beginning Sunday, the Union Cabinet, chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi today approved signing of a memorandum of understanding (MoU) between New Delhi and Kathmandu for the construction of a bridge over Mahakali River in India and Dharchula in Nepal.

“With the signing of MoU, diplomatic relation between the two countries will further improve,” an official statement said.

"As close neighbours, India and Nepal share unique ties of friendship and cooperation characterized by an open border and deep-rooted people-to-people contacts of kinship and culture.  Both India and Nepal have been working together on different regional forums i.e. SAARC, BIMSTEC as well as global fora,” it added.

The two neighbours are already looking at enhancing co-operation on several levels.

Amid changing geopolitical contours, foreign policy watchers are keenly tracking developments in India and Nepal.

Deuba is also expected to fly to Gujarat to participate in the Vibrant Gujarat Global Summit.  This is Deuba’s second official overseas trip. In November, he had travelled to Glasgow to participate in the UN climate conference.   

Also read: Have India and Nepal quietly started rechartering their bilateral ties?

According to Kathmandu Post, Deuba will be accompanied by a 30-member delegation.

“Discussions are still going on at different levels. We don’t have anything concrete as yet to share with the media apart from the fact that the visit has been confirmed,” the newspaper quoted foreign ministry spokesperson Sewa Lamsal as saying.

Since Deuba’s appointment as PM, several high-level visits of senior officials, dignitaries and even members of ruling parties of both countries have taken place.

Earlier, in an interview to Rising Nepal, Deuba had said, “We have an open border with India and there is people-to-people exchange at the greater level so maintaining good relations with the southern neighbour is in our interest. Nepalis go to India for work and pilgrimage.”

“We have more intensive public, cultural and commercial relations with it,” he told the news organisation.

While around 6 lakh Indians are living in Nepal about 8 lakh Nepalese have made India their home.