'Indian poll results positive for Nepal' | Latest News India - Hindustan Times

'Indian poll results positive for Nepal'

PTI | ByC. Paudyal (Indo-Asian News Service), Kathmandu
May 15, 2004 03:11 PM IST

Indian poll results are seen as positive for Nepal as Cong and Left parties are considered supportive of its democracy movement.

Nepal's major political parties and analysts have expressed happiness over the victory of the Congress-led alliance in the Indian elections, saying "it helps the democratic movement of Nepal".

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The results are seen as positive for Nepal as most of the leaders of the Congress and India's Left have supported Nepal's movement for democracy.

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Political observers here say the Indian elections were an example of how people's verdict can bring about a change.

The Congress party, as well as the left front had strongly supported Nepal's democratic movement in 1990 and some of the Indian leaders had publicly spoken in Kathmandu on the eve of movement.

"The Congress and its allies have always helped in Nepal's democratic movement," said Purushottam Basnet, Nepali Congress leader and a close aide of party president Girija Prasad Koirala.

Nepali Congress has had very good ideological relations with the Congress party since the time of India's first prime minister Jawahar Lal Nehru, he noted.

Basnet called it wrong thinking among some allies of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) when they called Nepal's monarch a "Hindu king". This would be changed now, he said.

"A democratic and secular party at the helm of power in India is always positive for Nepal's democracy," he commented.

The BJP was seen as being inclined towards the monarchy in Nepal, harping on the concept of a "Hindu king". Some of the leaders had reportedly referred to the king of Nepal as the "monarch of all Hindus".

"This misconception of monarchy as the incarnation of god will be changed with the formation of secular government of Congress and left front in India," said former ambassador to India Harsha Narayan Dhaubadel.

On the other hand, most of the Congress leaders had helped restore democracy in Nepal in the 1950s and in 1990 Basnet said, lauding the role played by former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi.

"The victory of a secular government led by Sonia Gandhi will be very positive and fruitful for Nepal," he said.

Former ambassador to India Lok Raj Baral said there will be no change in the overall policy of India towards Nepal but the new government will be positive about the struggle for democracy in Nepal.

The five political parties in Nepal - Nepali Congress, Communist Party of Nepal-Unified Marxist-Leninist (CPN-UML), Nepal Sadbhavana Party, Nepal Majdoor Kisan party and Janamorcha Nepal - have been agitating for the past year for restoration of democracy in the country.

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