PM visits Muktinath temple, plays traditional drum with locals

File A street vendor in Kathmandu

As voting began for the fiercely fought Karnataka Assembly polls this morning, Congress leader Ashok Gehlot on Saturday targeted Prime Minister Narendra Modi for his temple visits in Nepal, saying it was just to "influence the voters" in Karnataka.

On Friday, Modi had said that all misunderstandings with Nepal are over and the bilateral ties are heading to a new high as New Delhi announced Rs 100-crore aid to develop Janakpur city. In 2017, Chinese firms pledged investments of more than USD8.3 billion, dwarfing Indian commitments of USD317 million, and in May past year Nepal signed up to Beijing's ambitious One Belt, One Road initiative.

Gokhale also said that Modi's visits to cultural sites in Nepal "suggested that there should be strong people-to-people ties". It is an honour to have the Indian Prime Minister visit the temple.

He said both sides agreed to be committed towards the stated projects.

The land-locked country depends on India for trade and supplies.

After assuming office in February, Oli made his first foreign visit to India in April.

After wrapping up all rituals in Pashupatinath, PM Modi signed the visitor's book and was presented a miniature of the Pashupatinath temple by the authorities.

"I requested Modi Ji to facilitate the exchange of demonetised currency notes held in the Nepali banking system and by general public, at the earliest", Oli had said yesterday at a joint press meet after their bilateral talks.

The Investment Board Nepal (IBN) on Thursday granted an electricity generation licence to SJVN Arun III Power Development Company to generate power from the Arun III Hydropower Project located in eastern Nepal. PM Modi along with PM Oli jointly flagged off a bus service connecting Sita's birthplace Janakpur to Ayodhya.

"An auspicious start to Day 2 in Nepal!"

People from the temple town were excited about the event and were seen jostling with each other outside the "Ram Katha" Park to receive and mingle with the guests who arrived. Following meeting with various political leaders, he was offered civic reception by Kathmandu Metropolitan City at City Hall. Similarly, Nepal is incomplete without India and India is incomplete without Nepal. "It shows the importance India attaches to the historical ties".

"These connectivity measures will help Nepal to get better market access, thereby encouraging the establishment of industries and employment creation".

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