India on Wednesday provided Rs 233 crore to the Nepal Government for various infrastructure projects, including roads and reconstruction of houses destroyed in the massive earthquake in 2015 which saw the death of over 9,000 people.
The decision was taken during the 5th meeting of the Nepal-India Joint Commission attended by the External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar. On the occasion, a cheque of INR153 crore (NR 2.45 billion) was provided for the reconstruction of houses in Nuwakot and Gorkha districts that were badly affected during the earthquake.
Similarly, India also handed over a cheque of INR 80.71 crore for the construction of Hulaki Marga (Postal Roads) in the Terai region of Nepal. The amount was part of the INR 500 crore commitment made by India towards strengthening the roads in the Terai region. Jaishankar and Foreign Minister of Nepal Pradeep Gyawali witnessed the handing over of cheques to Nepalese officials.
A Memorandum of Understanding was signed between the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India and the Department of Food Quality Control of Nepal on the cooperation for maintaining food safety and standard, sources from the Indian Embassy said.
The joint meeting will review the overall state of bilateral relations, and various areas of cooperation such as connectivity and economic partnership, trade and transit, power and water resources, culture, education and other matters of mutual interest.
Established in 1987, the Nepal-India Joint Commission's meetings are being held alternately in both countries. The last meeting was held in New Delhi on October 2016. This is the first high-level visit to Nepal by any Indian minister after Prime Minister Narendra Modi's re-election in May this year.