India assures Maoists of support for stability in Nepal

April 16th, 2008 - 5:34 pm ICT by admin  

New Delhi, April 16 (IANS) After initial surprise at the Maoists’ lead in Nepal’s polls, India has assured the new dispensation of its support for stability and reconstruction of the Himalayan state. In the same breath, New Delhi has made it clear that a consensus government stands a better chance at solving problems of governance and providing credibility to a new constitution that will be rewritten after the formation of the constituent assembly.

External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee Tuesday spoke to Maoist leader Prachanda on phone and conveyed India’s support for peace and stability in Nepal, official sources told IANS.

The minister also conveyed New Delhi’s continuing support for the socio-economic development of Nepal, they said.

India has also made it clear that it was open to discussing a revision of the 1950 Indo-Nepal treaty, if the new dispensation desires it, to bring bilateral relations in tune with contemporary realities, the sources said.

With the Maoists getting a commanding lead in results of last week’s historic elections in Nepal, a win that New Delhi apparently did not anticipate, India is closely watching the shape of the new Maoist-led dispensation emerging in Nepal and is establishing links with its top leadership at various levels.

The Maoists have left no one in doubt that they will abolish the 240-year-old monarchy within a month.

India has vital strategic stakes in Nepal, a country that also shares a border with China, and, therefore, will be keenly watching signals and statements from the new dispensation about Kathmandu’s ties with New Delhi and Beijing.

New Delhi hailed the April 10 constituent assembly elections on the same day and expressed its willingness to back the people of Nepal “in the major tasks of democratisation and development that lie ahead while building a stable, prosperous and peaceful Nepal”.

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