India will remain a steadfast partner of Nepal in its quest for progress and prosperity, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said on Saturday after meeting Nepalese leader Pushpa Kamal Dahal, popularly known as Prachanda. The chairman of the Communist Party of Nepal is on a visit to India at the invitation of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) president J P Nadda.
After the meeting, Jaishankar described the discussions as "productive". "Pleased to welcome @cmprachanda to India on his visit at the invitation of BJP President @JPNadda ji. A productive discussion on strengthening our neighbourly relationship with a focus on economic cooperation," he tweeted.
"Reflecting our Neighbourhood First policy, India will remain a steadfast partner of Nepal in its quest for progress and prosperity," Jaishankar added. Nepal is important for India in the context of its overall strategic interests in the region and the leaders of the two countries have often noted the age-old "Roti-Beti" relationship.
The country shares a border of over 1,850 km with five Indian states -- Sikkim, West Bengal, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand. Land-locked Nepal relies heavily on India for the transportation of goods and services.
(With PTI Inputs)
Nepal's access to the sea is through India and it imports a predominant proportion of its requirements from and through India. The India-Nepal Treaty of Peace and Friendship of 1950 forms the bedrock of the special relations between the two countries.