BY SHRI K R NARAYANAN, PRESIDENT OF INDIA, WHILE ACCEPTING THE CREDENTIALS
FROM DR. BHEKH BAHADUR THAPA, AMBASSADOR-DESIGNATE OF THE
KINGDOM OF NEPAL TO INDIA
NEW DELHI, OCTOBER 17, 1997
It gives me pleasure
to welcome you as the Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of
the Kingdom of Nepal to India. Your considerable experience in diplomacy
and distinguished academic background in economic affairs at both national
and international levels will, I have no doubt, be valuable assets to
you in the discharge of your responsibilities.
India deeply values
its relations with Nepal. Our two countries enjoy a very close and friendly
relationship, based on shared historical, cultural and social traditions.
It is characterized by a remarkably rich, wide-ranging and multi-faceted
interaction in a diversity of fields. The underpinning of our relationship
is, of course, our geographical proximity, which serves to impart even
greater depth and dynamism to it. The evolution of a democratic system
of governance in your country has, indeed, served to reinforce these cherished
values further. If the relationship between our two countries is unique
in many ways, it is not only on account of the factors I have referred
to but equally because we have chosen consciously to keep it that way
and to strive constantly towards raising it to its fullest potential for
our mutual benefit.
The frequency of
high level visits between our two countries in the recent past has provided
an impetus and momentum to the present environment of mutual trust and
cooperation that we enjoy bilaterally. They have served to foster confidence
and trust in State-to-State relations. Each visit has been a milestone
in our joint progress.
initiatives taken by our two Governments recently have served to further
our common aim. The Mahakali River Treaty, by way of example, represents
a significant step in our joint efforts to harness the vast natural resources
at our disposal to the advantage of both our countries. A liberalised
trade and transit regime has provided avenues for maximising the benefits
of economic growth for the welfare of our peoples.
Our two countries
are also cooperating within the framework of the South Asian Association
for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) and both are committed to strengthening
it for the mutual benefit of all its members.
Your efforts, Excellency,
and ours are aimed at creating an environment in which the peoples of
our two countries can enjoy the fruits of prosperity and everlasting peace
and friendship. If our endeavours can contribute to the realisation of
these objectives, we could wish for no greater reward.
I request your Excellency
to convey my warm greetings and felicitations to His Majesty, the King
of Nepal. I am looking forward to meeting His Majesty on his forthcoming
visit to India. On behalf of the people and Government of India, I would
also like to extend through you, our best wishes to the people and Government
of Nepal. May the close and friendly ties between our two countries grow
and be further strengthened during your tenure in India. I wish you success,
and would like to assure you of the full support of the Government of
India in this task.