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BJP greets Koirala; seeks closer Indo-Nepal ties

By Onkar Singh in New Delhi
April 25, 2006 19:28 IST
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Bharatiya Janata Party on Tuesday congratulated G P Koirala for being nominated as the new prime minister of Nepal.

Party president Rajnath Singh in his letter to Koirala expressed hope that since the latter was a seasoned politician of the Himalayan kingdom and had been the prime minister before, he would lead the country on path of development and prosperity.

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"On behalf of the BJP, I convey my congratulations and felicitations on your nomination as the prime minister of Nepal. The Heroic struggle of the people of Nepal has led to restoration of democracy once again and reigns have come back again in your experienced hands, which certainly is going to bring back Nepal again on the path of development and prosperity," Singh wrote in his letter.

He hoped that relations between India and Nepal will once again be strengthened under Koirala's leadership.

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"The sovereign people of Nepal should be given every right to decide their own destiny. However, it is important to note that both India and Nepal have common concerns. India and Nepal both do face identical challenges on many issues of internal security. I am sure under your leadership, our legitimate security concerns would be addressed," Singh said, in an indirect reference to the Maoist problem.

Meanwhile, party leaders, who briefed the media persons informally at the party headquarters, failed to give any convincing reply as to why former foreign minister Jaswant Singh cancelled his trip to Kathmandu after King Gyanendra announced the restoration of democracy in Nepal.

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Jaswant Singh had announced his trip to Nepal at a press conference last week and his trip was scheduled to begin on May 24. "We can confirm that the trip has been cancelled," party spokesman Prakash Javadekar said in response to a question from the newsmen on Tuesday.

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Onkar Singh in New Delhi