India to help Nepal strengthen democracy

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Kathmandu, Feb 18 (ANI): Visiting Indian Foreign Secretary Shivshankar Menon today assured that India is committed to assist Nepal's democracy, stability and peace process.

Speaking at a press meet at the end of his two-day visit to Nepal, Menon pointed out that political leaders were engaged in drafting a new Constitution and solve the differences among various parties.

He said his meetings with Prime Minister Prachanda, Nepali Congress President Girija Prasad Koirala, Foreign Minister Upendra Yadav were fruitful and added that he got an opportunity to gain information on the ongoing peace process.

Stating that Nepal being the closest neighbour, India gives highest priority to relations between the two countries, Menon restated continued support for Nepal's development.

On a query about India's role in resolving the armed-conflict taking place in the Tarai region, Menon highlighted the need for high-level security arrangement at the open borders of the two nations.

Menon further said that construction works on the Koshi embankment is on schedule, but mentioned it would take more time than expected due heavy siltation in the river.

"India is yet to make detailed assessment on construction of the 207 MW Naumure Hydropower project which includes building irrigation infrastructure along with the plant," Kantipur quoted him as saying.

Nepal had sought help from India to build the project on West Rapti River, on the border between Dang and Pyuthan districts

Menon visited Nepal in November last year along with External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee. (ANI)

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