Prime Minister Narendra Modi met CPN-Maoist leader Prachanda and offered puja at the famous 5th century Pashupatinath temple on the second and last day of his maiden visit to Nepal.
After meeting PM, Prachanda expressed confidence that a “new chapter” has begun in Indo-Nepal ties.
Prachanda, who led a decade-long armed movement before joining mainstream politics about seven years back, said he found Modi “very clear” in his mind about supporting the ongoing peace process and economic progress of Nepal.
PM Modi also visited Pashupatinath temple. He was at the temple of Lord Shiva for about 45 minutes on a day which is considered pious as it was a Monday that falls in the month of ‘Shravan’.
He donated 2500 kgs of chandan (sandalwood) to the Pashupatinath Temple trust.
After meeting Prachanda said,”We had a very fruitful meeting. A new initiative has begun in relations of India and Nepal. It is really historic”, the former Prime Minister of Nepal, who has been a critic of India, said after the meeting with Modi during which the two discussed the current state of bilateral ties and the future.
Noting that Nepal is in a “very delicate phase of transition” in terms of peace process and Constitution-making process, Prachanda said these processes should be completed successfully at the earliest.
“Modiji clearly committed support to Constitution-making and concluding this process . . . . He is very clear in his mind to support Nepal’s economic prosperity and political stability. A new chapter has begun. It is really historic”, said Prachanda, whose actual name is Pushpa Kamal Dahal.
On Sunday, while reacting to Modi’s address to the Constituent Assembly, Prachanda had hailed the speech as “touching” and said he was visualising the dawn of a new chapter in bilateral ties.
Prachanda said the way Modi spoke demonstrates that he thoroughly understands the “ups and downs” of Nepal’s peace process.
“His speech was touching and very inspiring,” he had said while commenting on PM Modi’s 45-minute address.
The 60-year-old leader had quit the post of prime minister a few years back following a controversy over sacking of the army chief.