India hails 'historic' Nepal polls
India on Thursday hailed the "successful" constituent assembly elections in Nepal as "historic" and expressed support to its people as they address challenges of democratization and development.
"The successful constituent assembly elections in Nepal today are a welcome and historic step towards realizing the aspirations of the people of Nepal for a democratic future," external affairs ministry spokesperson Navtej Sarna said.
"This happy outcome is a product of the determination of the people of Nepal, with significant contributions by the political parties and the Election Commission of Nepal," he said.
"As always, India will stand by the people of Nepal in the major tasks of democratization and development that lie ahead while building a stable, prosperous and peaceful Nepal," he added.
"The constituent assembly provides a platform for the people of Nepal to determine the manner of their governance and their future," he underlined.
India is watching closely the outcome of the historic elections in Nepal that could usher in radical changes in the Himalayan country and bring to an end a centuries-old royal dynasty.
New Delhi has taken care not to be seen taking sides, but has consistently supported to Kathmandu in its efforts to rebuild the nation and decide its future according to the wishes of the people of Nepal.
Apart from the strategic importance of the neighbouring country, India has always backed peace and stability in Nepal, home to a large Indian diaspora, as it impacts directly on its vital interests.
The polls, held to elect an assembly to rewrite the constitution, were held amid reports of clashes with the police, killing several people and injuring many others, underlining the challenges that lie ahead in fashioning a lasting peace in the country.
Although the Maoists have said they will honour the poll results, the possibility of their resuming insurgency, if they don't like the election results, cannot be ruled out.