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PM's Nepal visit dates decided in advance: FS

Press Trust of India  |  Kathmandu 

Narendra Modi's visit to was decided soon after K P Sharma Oli's election as prime minister, today said, amid speculation over its timing which coincides with the assembly election.

Responding to a question at a press meet, Gokhale said Modi had telephoned Oli, who was sworn to the post on February 15, to congratulate him and the visits were discussed then.

"When Prime Minister Modi had telephoned Prime Minister Oli upon his election as the prime minister of Nepal, they had discussed the visit then. Prime Minister Oli had then expressed his desire for an early visit by Prime Minister Modi. They had discussed the visits, and the Prime Minister (Modi) had said you (Oli) come first.

"So that's how the sequence has been, first Prime Minister Oli visited and now Prime Minister (Modi) is in Nepal," Gokhale said.

Oli had arrived in on April 7, when he said the "historical" and "renewed" friendship between and was oriented towards the future and the bilateral ties have evolved according to the "needs of times".

On questions over the timing of the visit which coincides with the high-stake assembly election, he said, "whenever state visits take place they are decided as per the convenience of the two nations. No one prime minister alone can say that I will come at this time."

"So, don't focus on the dates, but focus on the content of this visit," the said.

Modi arrived in yesterday on a two-day visit and held discussions with Oli on strengthening ties between the two neighbouring countries.

He also met Nepal's former prime ministers Prachanda and Sher Bahadur Deuba, and opposition leaders and held wide-ranging discussions on ways to strengthen bilateral ties.

During the visit, the prime minister also offered prayers at the famed 20th century Janaki temple, the Mukhtinath and Pashupatinath temples and attended a civic reception at Janakpur.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Sat, May 12 2018. 14:55 IST