Kathmandu: India and Nepal have finalised a new agreement to boost people to people contacts and promote tourism by planning bus services on three routes from Kathmandu and Pokhara to New Delhi and Varanasi later this month.
The Motor Vehicle Agreement will be signed during the forthcoming visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Nepal during the 18th SAARC Summit which is taking place on November 25, according to Indian embassy sources.
"The officials of Nepal and India held talks in Kathmandu on October 30 to finalise the Motor Vehicle Agreement and other matters related with road transport and infrastructure," Indian embassy said.
The agreement envisages regular bus services on three routes, Kathmandu to New Delhi, Kathmandu to Varanasi and Pokhara to New Delhi, it said.
The agreement also aims to simplify the movement of private vehicles across the border. The proposed India-Nepal Friendship Car Rally on the Puri-Kathmandu-Delhi route will also get assistance from both governments.
The new bus services is likely to be launched on November 25, the day Prime Minister Modi arrives in Kathmandu, officials said.
While the Nepalese delegation was represented by Physical Infrastructure and Transport secretary Tulasi Prasad Situala, Indian side was led by Vijay Chibber, secretary in Road Transport and Highways Ministry.
The Indian side has imparted technical training to Nepal's highway engineers at the Indian Academy of Highway Engineers to start the new bus services.
During the secretary level meeting both sides also decided to prepare a feasibility report for three motorable bridges on the Mahakali river at Mahendra Nagar, Jhulaghat and Darchula and a suspension bridge at Shirsha in Dadeldhura district.