External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj rounded off her three-day visit to Nepal, settling a long-pending issue — the review of the 1950 peace and friendship treaty on the basis of recommendations from a group of eminent persons from both countries.
A communiqué issued by the Nepal-India Joint Commission, which met after a gap of 23 years late Saturday night, co-chaired by Sushma and her Nepal counterpart Mahendra Bahadur Pandey, said the Eminent Persons Group (EPG) will review bilateral treaties and agreements, including the 1950 Treaty of Peace and Friendship, within two years. The EPG will comprise a parliamentarian, lawyer, civil society leader and economist from each side.
“I am very satisfied with my visit. We hope to take the bilateral relations to a new height,” Sushma said. She performed a special puja at the Pashupatinath Temple and headed to the Tribhuvan International Airport from there.
The unexpected outcome was made possible by the flexibility Sushma displayed during her courtesy calls on President Ram Baran Yadav, PM Sushil Koirala and Leader of the Opposition Pushpa Kamal Dahal during which she conveyed India’s willingness to see Nepal safe, prosperous and stable. “I am happy over India’s generous and warm approach towards neighbouring countries,” Koirala said.
Sushma’s visit prepared the ground for the two-day visit of PM Narendra Modi from August 3.