Days after the successful 4th BIMSTEC Summit, Former Nepali PM and Chairman of ruling Communist Party of Nepal Pushpa Kamal Dahal (Prachanda) said the country is keen on taking ahead the SAARC Summit in its next move.
Prachanda made these sensational statements on the side-lines of his four-day bilateral visit to India in the last week concluding on September 09, 2018.
As part of his four-day visit that he called ‘productive’, the former Nepali PM has reportedly expressed his government’s commitment to revive the stalled 19th SAARC Summit at the earliest possible.
Ruling out misconceptions over BIMSTEC as replacement to SAARC, Prachanda said on September 07, 2018 that SAARC and BIMSTEC support each other and are not substitutes to one another.
“Some of India’s neighbours are jealous about progress in BIMSTEC. SAARC is not an alternative to BIMSTEC. India has to improve its diplomatic outreach in Nepal backed by timely implementation of bilateral and BBIN projects,” says an expert who closely followed BIMSTEC.
Prachanda informed that the Pakistan Government has already urged India for its decision on rescheduling of the SAARC Summit.
Explaining more on his India visit, Prachanda informed that they discussed on various key issues pertaining to Indo-Nepal bilateral ties and the region.
“It is rare to have long discussions with top leaders during bilateral meetings but this time it was a good opportunity for me. I had a discussion with PM Narendra Modi and other Indian leaders on various issues related to the two countries. This has given a very positive message to both countries,” said Prachanda.
Speaking to Nepali media on his return, Prachanda said they also discussed on past leadership agreements agreed upon by India and Nepal along with issues pertaining to trade deficit, cross-border and post-quake reconstruction.
Revival of SAARC gains significance in view of the recently-concluded 4th BIMSTEC Summit that has reportedly addressed some of the key issues that SAARC couldn’t.
Will have to wait to see what the latest Nepal-India bilateral discussions will lead to pertaining to further actions on the 19th SAARC Summit that was supposed to take place on November 2016 and got postponed due to some reasons.
Nepal is currently the SAARC Chair, which will be handed over to Pakistan in the 19th SAARC Summit.