With a 27-member team in tow, President Ram Baran Yadav left for Kolkata on 27 January to attend the annual function of a medical college he studied in. He will be meeting the Indian president, the prime minister, and other top officials in Delhi.
Some have remarked that a head of state should not have gone to India for a college function. At a time when the political deadlock has persisted for seven months due to the interference of the Indian establishment, it is natural to think that there is not much point in attending such a function. The president went to India for an official visit some time ago, so it is questionable whether his decision to go to India again was correct.
We can discuss this topic in the days to come but the president and his entourage should ensure that the visit does not tarnish Nepal's sovereignty, independence and self-esteem. Whatever the purpose of his visit, it is not just a private visit, so the president should focus on making it fruitful.
The president should focus on strengthening the existing relationship between the peoples of both countries. He also should not hesitate to raise concerns about Indian interference in Nepal's internal affairs with his counterpart and the prime minister. He should request the revision of the existing unequal treaties between the two countries so they don't undermine the Nepali people's aspirations, and ask that India act as a good neighbour. If the president succeeds in this, then his visit will be in the interest of the country. We hope his visit will succeed as a goodwill visit.