Has the Pm's visit to India been successful?
Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba returned home Sunday evening wrapping his five-day state visit to India. His visit to the southern neighbour was dragged into controversy in home for his unnecessary remarks about the constitution amendment during the joint press conference. During the joint press conference with his Indian counterpart Narendra Modi, Prime Minister Deuba made mention of the failed attempt of the government to endorse the constitution amendment bill and gave assurance to the Indian Prime Minister that he would make efforts to amend the constitution. He has unnecessarily inserted the issue of Nepal's constitution in his written speech which only sparked anger at home. Scholars, leaders of not only CPN-UML but also Maoist chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal and NC leader Dr Shekhar Koirala slammed PM Deuba's comments on the issue of the constitution amendment which was finalaised by the Parliament. Although Prime Minister Deuba had put a bold view on Nepal China relations when one of the Indian Minister out of nowhere raised the issue of China, his views on Nepal's constitution put his remarks on China-Nepal in the shadow. Deuba had told the participants of the Civic Reception of the Nepali PM by India Foundation that China is a good friend of Nepal while responding to a query of union minister Ram Vilash Paswan. But Deuba's retort was not welcomed. When Paswan accused China of “swallowing' Tibet, and assured that “India will not let that happen to Nepal”, Deuba said tersely: “China is a good friend of Nepal … China has always respected Nepal's sovereignty.” Deuba also managed to avoid any unwanted situation regarding the Doklam tension between India and China during his visit. Likewise, the agreement reached between Nepal and India during Deuba's India
visit regarding the Koshi high dam has also drawn flaks from public as well as politicians. Although the visit was said to be a state visit, no one-to-one talks were held between Deuba and Modi for no apparent reason. Instead, the two PMs held an unscheduled tea talks on the day Deuba landed in New Delhi. Unconfirmed sources said Indian PM skipped the one-to-one talks due to presence of Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Krishna Bahadur Mahara in Deuba's team because Indian leaders take Mahara as proChinese leader. Except for these three events--mentioning of Nepal's constitution by PM Deuba, agreements/ understanding on Koshi high dam and failure to have one-to-one talk with PM Modi, the New Delhi trip of PM Deuba, who has become PM for the fourth time with full backing of India, remained successful. However, Prime Minister Deuba defended all his views and agreements signed during his India visit both at the VVIP lounge of the Tribhuvan International Airport and the Parliament. Apprising the LegislatureParliament of his five-day state visit to India from August 23-27, Prime Minister Deuba Monday told the parliament that since the promulgation, implementation and acceptability of the constitution were the internal issues of Nepal and Nepali people, he would not compromise on the issues with anyone or any country. Stating that the comments of some political parties, leaders and media outlets about his expression on the constitution amendment made during the joint press conference with his Indian counterpart Modi in New Delhi drew his attention, the Prime Minister argued that it was not unnatural to inform the international community and the neighbouring countries about Nepal's agenda. “Updating the international community and neighbouring countries about the political developments of Nepal is not unnatural,” the Prime Minister told the parliament meeting. Earlier on Sunday, speaking at a brief press meet organised at the VVIP Lounge of the Tribhuvan International Airport (TIA), PM Deuba said his visit remained. He also told journalists that he raised the issue of the problems faced by the Nepali oil tankers in India and the inundation problems in Nepal's Terai. During his visit, he also held a meeting with Chief Minister Nitish Kumar Singh of Bihar.