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Ex-foreign secy Saran meets Prachanda

Yubaraj Ghimire, KATHMANDU:India’s former foreign secretary Shyam Saran, who is on a visit to Nepal, met Maoist chief Prachanda at the latter’s Lazimpat residence on Thursday night. A former ambassador to the country, Saran’s visit this time around is quiet as it comes in the midst of a political and constitutional crisis.

Sources close to the Napal Maoist chief confirmed the meeting but refused to divulge specific details about what was discussed.

In Nepal, Saran is perceived as a key architect of India’s new Nepal policy that involved giving up ‘Constitutional Monarchy’ and working with the “Maoists”.

The visit also comes at a time when S D Muni, a former member of India’s National Security Advisory Board and Nepal expert, has revealed that Nepali Maoists and the Prime Minister’s Office (of India) first established their contact in June 2002, and their coordinated activities brought about the political change in 2006.

“There is speculation that Saran will be favouring the continuation of Baburam Bhattarai as the Prime Minister, but we know he does not represent Indian establishment now as in the past,” said a prominent leader of the Nepali Congress, requesting anonymity. Source: Indian Express

Published Date: Friday, July 13th, 2012 | 11:23 PM

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