Kathmandu : Indian President Pranab Mukherjee has said that India attaches highest priority to its relations with its neighbours – particularly Nepal with whom it has the closest fraternal ties.
In his address at the banquet hosted in his honour by President Bidya Bhandari late his evening, President Mukherjee said India and Nepal share age-old historical and civilisational links and the 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”, he said.
Stating that the destinies of the two countries are inter-linked, President Mukherjee said, “We have a vital stake in each other’s wellbeing and prosperity”.
President Mukherjee also 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 the society. They seek to implement a Constitution that responds to the needs of their diverse social fabric”, he remarked, while wishing Nepalis all success in this noble endeavor.
The Indian President also saluted the resilience of the people of Nepal in the face of acute adversity, in wake of the natural disaster that struck Nepal last year. “India remains committed to help as required – and will support the Government and people of Nepal in reconstruction of their homes and their lives”.
Stating that India has an abiding interest in the socio-economic development of Nepal, President Mukherjee said as Nepal’s closest neighbour, India takes pride in the achievements of the people of Nepal, and in the success of her developmental partnership with Nepal.
He said the rapid economic transformation that is taking place in India presents unprecedented opportunities for the people of Nepal while stating that India remains ready to extend all possible support in accordance with the requirements of the people and Government of Nepal.
President Mukherjee noted that the common challenges that we face in the 21st century necessitates an environment of peace and security in our region and beyond while adding that terrorism, today, poses the most serious threat to our peace and security. “The international community will need to work together and we will need to foster tolerance and understanding in all sections 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