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Amid strained ties, India, Nepal to hold talks on Monday to discuss New Delhi's projects

This will be the first formal talks between the two sides amid strained ties. The border row will not be discussed in the meet, since the talks do not have the mandate for it.

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Amid strained ties, India, Nepal to hold talks on Monday to discuss New Delhi's projects
(File Photo)
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India and Nepal will sit on Monday to talk on New Delhi's development projects in the country. Talks will start at 10 AM local time in Kathmandu and last for 2 hours to finish at 12 noon. 

This will be the first formal talks between the two sides amid strained ties. The border row will not be discussed in the meet, since the talks do not have the mandate for it. 

The "scheduled oversight mechanism" as the talks are referred to as will see India being represented by its envoy in Kathmandu Vinay Mohan Kwatra and Nepal by Foreign Secretary Shankar Das Bairagi.

Indian government sources said the meet is "part of regular interaction between India and Nepal" and the mechanism was set up in 2016 to "review ongoing bilateral economic and development projects on a periodic basis". 

On Saturday both Indian PM Modi and Nepal PM Oli spoke to each other for the first time in months as ties deteriorated after the new Nepal Map. The Nepal Map showed Indian territories as Nepali territories irking New Delhi.

The talks, at the request of Nepali PM, focused on the COVID-19 crisis. Prime Minister Narendra Modi offered India’s "continued support to Nepal in this regard", Indian govt readout on the talks said.

Prime Minister Modi "recalled the civilizational and cultural links that India and Nepal share", something New Delhi has been emphasising even as the government-to-government talks went downhill. Nepal PM conveyed his congratulations for India’s recent election as a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council. 

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