New Delhi, Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke on phone on July 19 with Sher Bahadur Deuba and conveyed congratulations and best wishes on the latter’s appointment as the Prime Minister of Nepal and for winning the confidence vote in Parliament.
Recalling the unique and millenia-old people-to-people linkages that underpin the special friendship between India and Nepal, the leaders agreed to work together to enhance bilateral cooperation in all areas.
The two leaders discussed, in particular, ways to strengthen cooperation and coordination in the context of ongoing effort against the COVID-19 pandemic.
India and Nepal initiated their relationship with the 1950 Indo-Nepal Treaty of Peace and Friendship and accompanying secret letters that defined security relations between the two countries, and an agreement governing both bilateral trade and trade transiting Indian territory.
The 1950 treaty and letters exchanged between the then Indian government and Rana rulers of Nepal, stated that “neither government shall tolerate any threat to the security of the other by a foreign aggressor” and obligated both sides “to inform each other of any serious friction or misunderstanding with any neighbouring state likely to cause any breach in the friendly relations subsisting between the two governments.” These accords cemented a “special relationship” between India and Nepal.
The Indo-Nepal border is open; Nepalese and Indian nationals may move freely across the border without passports or visas and may live and work in either country. However, Indians are not allowed to own land-properties or work in government institutions in Nepal, while Nepalese nationals in India are allowed to work in some Indian government institutions notably the Indian military. An estimated 32,000 Nepalese citizens are employed as active duty soldiers in the Indian Army