Visiting Indian Minister for Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari, who is here to participate in an infrastructure summit, paid a courtesy call on Nepal Prime Minister Sushil Koirala at his official residence Wednesday.During the meeting, the two leaders discussed various issues, including Nepal-India relations, India's experience in infrastructure development, the ongoing constitution drafting process in Nepal and Nepal-India development assistance.Gadkari thanked Prime Minister Koirala for providing time to him despite his busy schedule, and expressed the belief that Nepal would get a new democratic constitution within the slated time under Koirala's leadership.Koirala said Nepalis could not focus their attention towards development as they had spent six decades in the struggle for establishing democracy, and for its institutional development.
Observing that peace and stability were necessary in a democratic environment for the development of the country, he said an environment conducive for the same has been created after the Constituent Assembly elections were held Nov 19, 2013.The Nepal prime minister said the door to development has now opened in the country. He said the recently signed Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) and Project Development Agreement (PDA) between Nepal and India have created investment environment in the hydropower sector.Koirala said Nepal's two neighbouring countries -- India and China -- as well as the international community have continuously supported the constitution-framing process in the Himalayan nation and also expected continuous support in the days ahead. He said work was underway to promulgate the new constitution within the slated time under the schedule published after an agreement among political parties represented in the Constituent Assembly.
The prime minister said although initiatives were underway to forge a consensus on the contentious issues of constitution-drafting, including the form of governance, state restructuring and judiciary and the electoral system, the parties could not reach any substantive conclusion. Wishing for success in promulgating the new constitution within the slated time, Minister Gadkari said India would always provide support for peace, stability and development of Nepal. Addressing the inaugural session of the Nepal Infrastructure Summit 2014, Gadkari, as keynote speaker, offered India's full cooperation to Nepal in developing its transport and infrastructure sector and shared the success stories of India's public-private partnership (PPP) model in constructing roads and other developmental projects. The Indian minister, at a separate event, addressed young entrepreneurs and businessmen of Nepal.