Kathmandu: Nepal’s first woman President Bidhya Devi Bhandari will visit India next month, her first official foreign trip after assuming office in October last year.
Her visit comes nearly three months after Prime Minister K P Sharma Oli also chose India to be his first foreign destination after becoming the premier in October.
Preparations are on for Nepal presidents official visit to India at the invitation of the president of India, though it has not yet been officially announced, said sources close to the president.
Though May 9 is the tentative date of the visit and detail programmes of the entourage is being worked out, the exact date will be fixed within a couple of days, said spokesperson of the President.
According to media reports, 54-year-old Bhandari will first reach the New Delhi on May 9 and hold meetings with senior Indian officials and leaders the following day.
In New Delhi, President Bhandari will meet her Indian counterpart Pranab Mukherjee on May 10, according to the preliminary itinerary.
On the same day, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and other Indian leaders will pay courtesy calls on President Bhandari, The Kathmandu Post reported.
Initially Bhandari had shown interest to take part in the Simhastha Kumbh Mela in Ujjain, Madhya Pradesh, and accordingly it was communicated to the Indian side, the report said.
According to officials, the Indian side, however, expressed its desire to host her in New Delhi first and make her personal-cum-religious visit an official one.
After completing meetings and engagements in New Delhi, she will fly to Ujjain to take part in the Simhastha Kumbh Mela.
The details of the visit, size of the delegation and other preparations are yet to be worked out, the paper quoted officials as saying.
The bilateral ties between the two countries had faced turbulence in the recent past due to the months-long Madhesi agitation and subsequent blockade which halted the supply of essential goods to landlocked Nepal from India.
Madhesis, mostly of Indian-origin, have been demanding the new Constitution be amended to include their concerns about adequate political representation and redrawing of federal boundaries.