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India expresses concern over strife in Nepal

New Delhi: India has expressed concern over the ongoing strife in several parts of Nepal, where a proposal to revert as a Hindu state was overwhelmingly rejected by the Constituent Assembly, triggering violent protests amid
PTI September 15, 2015 18:01 IST
PTI

New Delhi: India has expressed concern over the ongoing strife in several parts of Nepal, where a proposal to revert as a Hindu state was overwhelmingly rejected by the Constituent Assembly, triggering violent protests amid an already volatile situation over federal structure.

It has asked all the political parties there to resolve any outstanding issue through dialogue in an atmosphere free from violence.

External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj also stressed on a durable and resilient Constitution which was necessary to build a modern Nepal and hoped that Nepal's leaders will leave no stone unturned in their efforts.

In a statement, she noted that horrific violence has once again shaken Nepal's soul and whether the victims are Nepali citizens or government officials, the blood spilt in all the incidents was Nepalese.

"In this context, we urge continuing flexibility on the part of all the political forces so that any outstanding issues are addressed through dialogue and widest possible agreement, in an atmosphere free from violence.

"A Constitution, which is fully owned by and accommodates the aspirations of all regions and sections of the Nepalese society, will lay a durable foundation for a peaceful and prosperous Nepal and will become the focal point for Nepal's bright future," she said.

Her statement came in the backdrop of more than two- thirds of lawmakers in the 601-member Constituent Assembly in Nepal turning down the proposal by pro-Hindu Rastriya Prajatantra Party-Nepal (RPP-N) to amend the Constitution to restore the country as a Hindu state and declared that it should remain secular as the Assembly resumed voting on articles of the draft Constitution clause by clause.

Nepal on Sunday entered the final phase of promulgating its new Constitution with the three major parties going ahead with clause-wise voting on the final draft of the statute despite a boycott by Madhesi parties and violent protests that have claimed nearly 40 lives.

Observing that Nepal's political parties, organisations and intellectuals have always displayed maturity and foresight in times of crises, Swaraj said, it was only with their continued leadership and wisdom that Nepal can overcome its current difficulties.

She also assured that India is committed to further strengthening its close and cordial relations with the government and people of Nepal and will continue to provide all support and assistance, in accordance with the aspirations of the people ofNepal for peace, stability and socio-economic development.