Madhav Nepal, who is on a five-day visit to India, met Sonia Gandhi at her 10, Janpath residence in New Delhi Thursday. At a time when Nepal whose instability has a direct impact on India is bracing for the second constituent assembly elections to be held Nov 19, the Indian establishment has invited senior Nepali political leaders to gauge whether elections can take place. Nepal's 33 opposition parties, led by the CPN-Maoist, had Sunday urged the international community not to support the government's bid to hold the elections. The parties criticised the increasing foreign intervention in the internal affairs of Nepal.
Two former prime ministers of Nepal -- Sher Bahadur Deuba of the Nepali Congress and Unified Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal -- have already visited New Delhi and met senior Indian leaders and officials.
Extending support to Nepal's political as well as electoral process, Sonia Gandhi also made clear that India had nothing to do with Nepal's internal affairs and it was up to the Nepali leadership to decide and act to carve their own fate and future.
Bhattarai quoted Sonia Gandhi as saying: "Those forces who have agreed to join the election process and to transform Nepal economically and are committed to drafting a new constitution should come together. The decision taken by the democratic forces, including those supporting elections and ending the transition, will be welcomed by India."
In his meeting with Sonia Gandhi, Nepal appraised her about the latest political situation and the political parties' decision to go for election. Expressing deep sorrow over the loss of lives and property in the Indian state of Uttarakhand and on the Nepali side, he highlighted the negative consequences of climate change and offered to work together at various policy levels to cope with the problem.
Nepal also stressed on regular bilateral political-level visits and interactions between the two nations to understand each other better, strengthen relations and deepen political and cultural ties, said Bhattarai.