Nepal and India must join hands to tackle the problem of extremism as there are chances of misuse of their 1,700 kilometre open border, India's top diplomat said here today. "India has achieved rapid economic progress over the past few decades and Nepal being a close neighbour can benefit a lot from India's economic prosperity," India's Ambassador to Nepal Manjeev Singh Puri said. "We need to forge cooperation and collaboration if we are to take benefit of the 1,700 km long open border between our two countries, the ambassador said. "Nepal and India need to work together to tackle the problem of extremism as there is the chances of misusing the open border," he said. He was speaking at a discussion on the theme, "Sharing views on Nepal - India relations for the better understanding and collaboration," organised by Nepal-India Friendship Society here. Nepali Congress central member NP Saud who attended the meeting said, both India and Nepal should take into consideration the security interest of each other and people to people relations should be strengthened for better understanding between the two countries. President of Nepal Communist Party (United) Ganesh Shah said that lack of trust and confidence has become the main problem between Nepal and India in the recent period and people to people relations should be promoted for better understanding and collaboration between the two neighbours. Former Ambassador of Nepal to India Lokraj Baral has underlined the need to change mind-set on the part of leadership of both the country to build confidence and clear misunderstandings. A host of speakers from political, business, social and media sectors, who spoke on the occasion underlined the need for promoting trade and business between the two countries that would enable Nepal to overcome its huge trade deficit with India. Nepal is moving towards political stability after promulgating the constitution and India should support and extend cooperation so as the country attain political stability and move towards economic prosperity, they pointed out. The Nepal government has tabled a new Constitution amendment bill in the Parliament to address the demands of the agitating Madhesi parties ahead of the local elections. Madhesis, mostly of Indian-origin, launched a prolonged agitation between September 2015 and February last year against the implementation of the new Constitution which they felt marginalised the Terai community.
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