Modi visit to Nepal’s Janakpur temple cancelled

Nepal government blames Maoists, Madhesi paries; Indian Embassy says “no official word yet”

November 21, 2014 11:14 am | Updated December 04, 2021 11:28 pm IST - Kathmandu

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to the eastern Nepali city of Janakpur to offer prayers at the famous Janaki Temple has been cancelled, Nepal government officials said on Thursday.

Issuing a statement, Minister for Physical Infrastructure and Transport Bimalendra Nidhi confirmed the cancellation, saying the decision was conveyed by the Indian Embassy in Kathmandu to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Kathmandu.

However, an official at the Indian Embassy in Kathmandu denied the cancellation. “There’s no official communication on the conformation of the cancellation of the Prime Minister’s visit,” Abhay Kumar, Spokesperson at the Indian Embassy told  The Hindu . Mr. Kumar said he was aware of the local media reports and a final decision would be taken in a day or two.

There are also conflicting reports about Mr. Modi’s visits to religious places in Lumbini in Kapilvastu and Muktinath in Mustang district which he is scheduled to visit after the SAARC Summit in Kathmandu on November 27.

Mr. Nidhi blamed the UCPN (Maoist) and Madhes-based political parties for the cancellation. “Some Madhesi parties led by the UCPN (Maoist) protested against preparation of the visit which has been completed.” Their plan to make a parallel stage to welcome Mr. Modi and their threat to breach security led to the decision of the cancellation, Mr. Nidhi said.

The opposition parties objected to the allegation and blamed the government for the cancellation.

The dispute about the venue of the public reception for the Indian Prime Minister was the cause behind the cancellation. The government wanted it to be an “invitee-only” event inside the Janaki Temple complex, whereas most of the MPs from the region, business community and locals wanted it to be held at the nearby Barhabigh field which can accommodate about 400,000 people, according to some estimates.

There was also dispute over whether the Indian PM should be delivering a public address and the precedent it would set.

Top News Today

Sign in to unlock member-only benefits!
  • Access 10 free stories every month
  • Save stories to read later
  • Access to comment on every story
  • Sign-up/manage your newsletter subscriptions with a single click
  • Get notified by email for early access to discounts & offers on our products
Sign in


Comments have to be in English, and in full sentences. They cannot be abusive or personal. Please abide by our community guidelines for posting your comments.

We have migrated to a new commenting platform. If you are already a registered user of The Hindu and logged in, you may continue to engage with our articles. If you do not have an account please register and login to post comments. Users can access their older comments by logging into their accounts on Vuukle.