Mukherjee feted at civic reception in Kathmandu

Kathmandu, Nov 3 (IANS) Visiting Indian President Pranab Mukherjee was feted by the people of Kathmandu at a civic reception on Thursday.

Kathmandu Metropolitan City Office Chief and Executive Officer Rudra Singh Tamang handed over a ‘Key of the Kathmandu City’ to Mukherjee for his contribution for enhancing Nepal-India ties while working in various capacities in the India government and always keeping Nepal at priority.

The president was also gifted with a replica of the wooden door and idol of Manjushree, a legendary deity, who is believed to have cut the gorge at Chobar to allow human settlement in the valley.

Kathmandu is not only the city of politics and but it is also the capital of spiritualism, said Mukherjee after the civic reception, noting that for religious and cultural aspects, it holds significant space.

This is the second time the metropolis has offered such a high-level honour. In 1998, the city had organised such a reception programme for then Indian President K.R. Narayanan during his official visit.

Addressing the programme, Mukherjee expressed his gratitude towards KMC for organising the civic reception.

“It is a great privilege for me to visit historic and holy city of Kathmandu, I am overwhelmed by the warmth given by Kathmandu,” said Mukherjee.

During his 10 minute speech, he praised the abundant beauty of Nepal, its rich culture and religion. “This visit has become more of a pilgrimage for me,” he said, adding that Nepal and India “also share common cultures and we are committed for strengthening our close ties further”.

Wishing success for the implementation of the new Constitution promulgated last year, Mukherjee said that India’s support will always be there as Nepal embarks on its journey as a federal, democratic republic