Tremor in Baluwatar after secret meeting of Shyam Saran with Dahal


Baluwatar has been rocked after former Indian foreign secretary Shyam Saran quietly came to Kathmandu and met CPN Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal.
Sources close to Prime Minister (PM) and CPN Chairman KP Sharma Oli confide with Setopati that Saran, who keeps keen interest in Nepal affairs, came to Kathmandu in the last week of June, met Dahal at Khumaltar and returned back to Delhi.
PM Oli did not even know about the ‘secret’ meeting for a few days. “PM Oli has started discussions with his confidants after arrival of former Indian ambassador to Nepal and foreign secretary Shyam Saran, and recent meetings of Dahal with Indian ambassador Manjeev Singh Puri,” a source said.
A member of the Oli Cabinet also confirmed that.
Members of PM Oli’s core team Bishnu Rimal and Rajan Bhattarai had posted on social media about external maneuverings after that.
“The first term of PM Oli was completely anti-Indian. India must have taken that as a matter of prestige. The Indians, therefore, have been close to Dahal,” a Cabinet minister said.
The issues of differing comments by ministers about the testing of Indian vegetables for pesticides and the public denial by PM Oli about the Indian letter also have been linked with these meetings.
PM Oli in the program ‘PM with people’ broadcast on Nepal Television has also hinted that Dahal did not tell him about the letter despite having knowledge about that.
“The Indian Embassy apparently wrote to the Foreign Ministry to not test Indian vegetables for pesticides. The Indian ambassador then reached Khumaltar to meet Dahal carrying that letter. Dahal then phoned Industry Minister Matrika Yadav and instructed to stop the process of pesticide testing,” the source told Setopati confirming what Oli hinted.
The relationship between the two CPN chairmen is currently strained about the two taking turns as PM and the power balance inside the party. Dahal had said in an interview that he cannot even imagine that Oli will step back from the agreement to take turn as PM when the latter had gone to India to attend swearing-in of Indian PM Narendra Modi.

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