International

Nepal recalls ambassador, cancels President’s visit

President Bhandari was scheduled to land in Delhi on May 9 to be a guest of President Pranab Mukherjee at the Rashtrapati Bhavan.

The political crisis in Nepal snowballed on Friday as Kathmandu recalled its ambassador to India hours after cancelling President Bidhya Devi Bhandari’s visit to the Simhastha Kumbh at Ujjain.

Ambassador Deep Kumar Upadhyay told The Hindu that the decision was taken after a Cabinet meeting during which his role in the latest political crisis came under criticism.

‘Lack of trust’

“There is a lack of trust between the governments of India and Nepal and I am being recalled to Kathmandu owing to a major misunderstanding between the two governments,” Mr. Upadhyay said, after a telephone conversation with the Prime Minister’s Office in Kathmandu, during which he was ordered to return. “I am being blamed for certain things which are not right. I am trying to find out the truth but honestly, I do not want to stick to my current post if my presence cannot help in improving ties,” he said.

Helped in agreement

Political sources in Nepal said the crisis was orchestrated with help from Mr. Upadhyay. The sources said one of the charges against Mr. Upadhyay was that he had facilitated the agreement between Nepali Congress leader Sher Bahadur Deuba and former Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal ‘Prachanda’ which almost toppled the present government.

Mr. Prachanda is a coalition partner of Prime Minister K.P. Sharma Oli.

Mr. Upadhyay, a prominent member of the Nepali Congress (NC), did not inform Nepal’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs before visiting Kathmandu earlier this week when the Prachanda-Deuba agreement was reached.

On May 4, Mr. Prachanda triggered political instability by declaring an end to the ruling coalition. Though discussion has been on to save the eight-month old government, Mr. Prachanda’s final decisions are yet to be publicised, with certain sections claiming that the he agreed to preserve the coalition if Mr. Oli stepped aside, allowing him to succeed in three months.

Earlier in the day, officials said the cancellation of President Bhandari’s visit to Delhi and Ujjain was “on account of political developments in Nepal”.



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Printable version | May 27, 2020 6:10:13 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/international/Nepal-recalls-ambassador-cancels-President%E2%80%99s-visit/article14304651.ece

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