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Nepal’s Constituent Assembly rejects proposal for Hindu state

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Kathmandu:  Nepali lawmakers on Monday rejected a proposal to restore the Hindu character of the Himalayan nation with the Constituent Assembly (CA) firmly plumping for secularism that was adopted seven years ago.

The 601-member CA — tasked with framing the country’s new constitution — voted clause-by-clause on individual articles of the proposed constitution and ensured that its secular character — adopted in May 2008 by the world’s once-only-Hindu kingdom — was retained, the Himalayan Times reported.

Kamal Thapa, chairman of the pro-monarchist Rastriya Prajatantra Party-Nepal and Rastriya Prajatantra Party’s Amrit Bohora had demanded that secularism be removed from the constitution and the Hindu state character be restored instead.

After CA Chairman Subas Chandra Nembang rejected the twin-RPP proposal, Kamal Thapa demanded voting.

Thapa’s proposal for a vote received the support of only 21 lawmakers in the 601-seat Constituent Assembly. CA rules require that at least 61 members approve a proposal for voting.

With inputs from IANS

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India, Nepal Review New Developments in Ties

There were also perceptions that Oli was leaning more towards China than India

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Sushma Swaraj, External affairs minister of India. Wikimedia

Recent developments in India-Nepal ties across various sectors came up for discussion during a meeting between External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and Nepalese Foreign Minister Pradeep Kumar Gyawali on Thursday.

“The two ministers reviewed recent developments in bilateral ties across diverse sectors, including progress achieved on the three transformative initiatives launched in 2018 in the areas of agriculture, railways and inland waterways as well as pace of implementation of ongoing bilateral development and connectivity projects,”the External Affairs Ministry said in a statement.

“They expressed satisfaction at the significant progress made in different sectors of cooperation as a result of intensified bilateral exchanges at all levels in recent months,” it said.

According to the statement, the two leaders reiterated their commitment to maintain the new momentum and to further strengthen the traditionally close and friendly ties between the two countries.

India Pak relations
India, Nepal review new developments in ties.

India reset its ties with Nepal last year through a visit by Prime Minister Modi, his first after K.P. Sharma Oli became the Prime Minister.

During the visit, both sides agreed to boost trade and economic links, connectivity via air, land and water, people-to-people ties, with Modi declaring that India will work like a sherpa in the Himalayan nation’s development endeavours.

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This happened after there was a chill in India-Nepal ties during Oli’s earlier stint between October 2015 and August 2016 when a border blockade blamed on New Delhi crippled Nepal’s economy.

There were also perceptions that Oli was leaning more towards China than India. (IANS)