With external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj wrapping up her Nepal visit on Sunday, Nepal has already begun preparations to welcome Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The Prime Minister will reach Kathmandu on August 3 for a two-day visit, the first by an Indian head of government in 17 years since the last bilateral trip by Inder Kumar Gujral.
Security has been beefed up at places to be visited by Modi and around the Hyatt Hotel where he will be staying during the trip.
An Indian security team is already in Kathmandu and is holding discussions with Nepali security agencies and foreign ministry officials to ensure that the visit passes without a glitch.
Like Swaraj, Modi too will visit the popular Pashupatinath Temple. He will perform special rituals on Monday -- a special day during Shrawan month, when nearly 300,000 devotees visit.
“Devotees may have to wait an additional half-an-hour because of Modi’s visit to the temple,” Govinda Tandon, member secretary of Pashupati Area Development Trust (PADT) told Republica.
The Prime Minister will land at Tribhuvan International Airport on Sunday morning in a special Indian Air Force plane. A team of 70-75 persons including bureaucrats and businessmen will accompany him.
Modi will address Nepal’s parliament on Sunday. He will meet President Ram Baran Yadav and Prime Minister Sushil Koirala. He will also take part in a dinner hosted by his Nepali counterpart.
Nepal’s three prominent political parties—ruling Nepali Congress and Communist Party of Nepal (Unified Marxist Leninist) and opposition Unified Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) held a meeting on Monday to discuss the Indian prime minister’s visit.
“The meeting held at Prime Minister’s Sushil Koirala’s official residence dwelt on the agendas to be raised during Modi’s trip. The parties will again meet on Tuesday,” said Koirala’s media coordinator Prakash Adhikari.