Kathmandu: Prime Minister Narendra Modi arrived in Nepal on Thursday morning to attend the 4th Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) Summit which would end on August 31 met his Bangladeshi counterpart, Sheikh Hasina. Both PM Modi and Sheikh Hasina then met Nepal President Bidhya Devi Bhandari. Also Read - Delhi Enters Weekend Lockdown, UP To Impose Curfew On Sunday As India's Fight Against COVID Continues
PM Modi was welcomed by Nepal’s Defence Minister Ishwar Pokhrel when he had arrived in Kathmandu. Modi will later have lunch with Bidhya Devi Bhandari. The talks will begin with an inaugural ceremony and later in the evening, a gala dinner will be hosted by Nepal Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli. Also Read - Nirav Modi's Extradition Approved by UK Home Minister Ahead of Boris Johnson's India Visit
Apart from meeting Sheikh Hasina and Prayut Chan-o-cha, PM Modi will meet foreign leaders like Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena and Myanmar’s head of state Win Myint at the sidelines of the event. This is Modi’s fourth visit to Nepal. He will be handing over the hospice built inside the premise of the Pashupatinath Temple to Nepali Prime Minister KP Oli tomorrow. The foundation stone to build the hospice in the Pashupatinath Temple premises was laid in 2001. It is claimed to have facilities like that of a three-star hotel and the Indian Government has given assistance of 22 crore Nepali rupees. The hospice can host nearly 398 pilgrims at a time, which has 82 rooms in total. Also Read - Mamata Banerjee Urges EC To Merge Remaining Phases of Bengal Polls Into One Amid COVID Cases Surge
Meanwhile, in view of the arrival of the VVIPs, Nepal’s International Airport, the Tribhuvan International Airport was closed for about two-and-a-half hour, the Air Traffic Controller Room (ATR) of the airport had said earlier. State Heads and representatives from Bhutan, Myanmar and Sri Lanka have already arrived in Nepali capital Kathmandu for the Summit. A four-layer security arrangement has been made for the head of the states of BIMSTEC member nations, which comprises Nepal Army, Armed Police Force, Nepal Army and National Investigation Department.
The Nepal Army is designated to take on the central charge of the security during the BIMSTEC Summit, but Prime Minister has opted to bring his own security team. A total of 35 special commandos for the security of PM Modi already have arrived Kathmandu late last week. Along with the special security force, three bullet-proof cars also have been brought to Nepal’s capital Kathmandu last week. BIMSTEC, the regional group of seven countries which lies near the Bay of Bengal, includes Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Myanmar, Nepal, Sri Lanka and Thailand.