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Rashtrapati Bhavan : 02.11.2016

The President of India, Shri Pranab Mukherjee has said that the destinies of India and Nepal are interlinked and the two nations have a vital stake in each other’s well-being and prosperity. He was speaking at a banquet hosted in his honourby Her Excellency Smt. Bidhya Devi Bhandari, the President of Nepal in Kathmandu today (November 2, 2016).

The President said our people have always maintained close ties of friendship and co-operation. The socio-economic, cultural and people-to-people ties between our two nations reinforce the warm relations and mutual understanding that exists between our two Governments. These special bonds are at the heart of the India-Nepal friendship. They are the real drivers of our partnership; they provide vitality and dynamism to our unique, time-tested and multi-faceted relations.

The President said the common challenges that we face in the 21st century will necessitate an environment of peace and security in our region and beyond. Terrorism, today, poses the most serious threat to our peace and security. The international community will need to work together. We will need to foster tolerance and understanding in all societies and eradicate the scourge of terrorism. Similarly, it is only a collective, globally co-ordinated effort that can effectively address the adverse impact of climate change.

The President said India has an abiding interest in the socio-economic development of Nepal. As Nepal’s closest neighbour, India takes pride in the achievements of the people of Nepal and in the success of her development partnership with Nepal. The canvass of our bilateral cooperation covers all dimensions of human endeavor. We have created robust institutional mechanisms to monitor our joint work. Our regular high-level exchanges are a hallmark of our bilateral relationship. They demonstrate the high level of confidence that we have in each other and our commitment to leverage our resources and expertise for the progress of our peoples.

The President said the people of Nepal are engaged in a historic undertaking - of consolidating the gains of democracy, achieving progress and ensuring that benefits reach each and every citizen. He applauded the enterprise and achievements of the people of Nepal in their quest for peace, stability, progress and all round development. The commitment of the people of Nepal in pursuing this transformation is truly commendable. They seek to achieve their objectives within a federal and democratic framework, taking on board all sections of society. They seek to accomplish a Constitution that responds to the needs of their diverse social fabric. We wish Nepal all success in this noble endeavour.

The President praised the resilience of the people of Nepal in the face of acute adversity. He said the natural disaster that struck Nepal last year caused untold hardship – and, as it always seems to happen, the weakest sections were the worst affected. At this time, and rightly so, the people of India considered it their duty to come to the assistance of their brethren in Nepal as swiftly as possible. India remains committed to help as required – and will support the Government and people of Nepal in reconstruction of their homes and their lives.

The President said working together our nations can do a lot. India attaches the highest priority to its relations with its neighbours – particularly Nepal with whom we have the closest fraternal ties. India is committed to further strengthening and expanding these ties and we know that so is Nepal. As sovereign nations we have ensured that our partnership is based on utmost trust and respect for each other's interests and concerns. We share the confidence that through this approach we are bound to succeed.

This release issued at 2100 hrs.