Indian Army Chief General Manoj Mukund Naravane arrived in Kathmandu on Wednesday on a three-day visit at the invitation of his Nepali counterpart, General Purna Chandra Thapa. Chief of General Staff, Lieutenant General Prabhu Ram Sharma received a four-member Indian Army delegation at the Tribhuvan International Airport.
According to Nepal Army Spokesperson Santosh Ballav Poudel, Naravane is scheduled to be conferred upon the rank of an honorary General of the Nepali Army by President Bidya Devi Bhandari. Conferring the highest rank to the Chiefs of each other’s militaries is a tradition that has been followed by Nepal and India since 1950.
Naravane’s trip comes during a low-point in Indian-Nepali relations, spurred by India’s decision to construct a road linking the state of Uttarakhand to Mansarova in China through the Lipulekh Pass, which is claimed by Nepal. Both sides are hopeful that the controversy over the road construction via Lipulekh will be laid to rest.