Nepal president puts off India visit due to Manmohan’s surgery

January 27th, 2009 - 11:41 am ICT by IANS  

Manmohan SinghKathmandu, Jan 27 (IANS) Nepal President Ram Baran Yadav’s visit to India has been put off indefinitely following the recent heart surgery of Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.Though no official dates had been announced for the India visit, Nepal’s head of state was to have left for New Delhi on Feb 2, according to media reports.

However, the president, who last year replaced deposed king Gyanendra as head of state when Nepal formally became a secular republic, decided to postpone the trip after the Indian premier, whom he was expected to meet during his visit, underwent an 11-hour coronary bypass surgery Saturday to remove a blockage.

It was to have been the president’s first trip abroad after assuming office in July after a bitterly contested election with the ruling Maoist party. Congratulating him on the victory, Indian President Pratibha Devisingh Patil had invited Yadav to visit New Delhi.

The visit was regarded as an olive branch to southern neighbour India by Nepal after the new prime minister, Maoist chief Pushpa Kamal Dahal Prachanda, chose to break away from the tradition of visiting India first after assuming office.

Instead, Prachanda chose to visit Beijing first, within a week of being sworn in, purportedly to attend the closing ceremony of the 2008 Summer Olympic Games.

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