India and the US have congratulated Sher Bahadur Deuba on being appointed the prime minister of Nepal. The 75-year-old veteran politician and Nepali Congress President, Deuba, on Tuesday formally became Nepal’s prime minister for a record fifth time after the Supreme Court’s intervention. The apex court on Monday overturned embattled Prime Minister K P Sharma Oli’s May 21 decision to dissolve the House of Representatives and ordered the appointment of Deuba as prime minister.
Indian Ambassador to Nepal, Vinay Mohan Kwatra, on Wednesday visited the residence of the newly-appointed prime minister to congratulate him. “Honoured to call on @DeubaSherbdr; extended congratulations and best wishes on becoming PM of Nepal. Looking forward to working with his team to deepen the multifaceted India-Nepal partnership and people-to-people ties for common progress and prosperity," the Indian embassy here tweeted along with a photograph of the meeting between Kwatra and Deuba.
Nepal’s foreign affairs ministry in a tweet said PM Deuba received Ambassador Kwatra at his residence in Budhanilakantha. The prime minister thanked the envoy for the congratulations and best wishes and “recalled the age-old friendly relations between the two countries", it said.
Meanwhile, US Ambassador to Nepal, Randy Berry, also congratulated Deuba for his appointment as the new prime minister. “The US mission looks forward to working with him to advance our nearly 75-years of friendship at all levels, from govt to all Nepalis," he tweeted on Tuesday evening, sharing a photograph of his meeting with the prime minister.
Deuba has previously served as Nepal’s Prime Minister four times from June 2017-February 2018, June 2004-February 2005, July 2001-October 2002 and September 1995-March 1997. At the recommendation of Oli, President Bidya Bhandari dissolved the lower house for the second time in five months on May 22 and announced snap elections on November 12 and November 19. As many as 30 petitions were filed at the Supreme Court against the move.
Deuba’s appointment ended Oli’s three-and-a-half-year-long and eventful tenure as prime minister. Nepal plunged into a political crisis on December 20 last year after President Bhandari dissolved the House and announced fresh elections on April 30 and May 10 at the recommendation of Prime Minister Oli, amidst a tussle for power within the ruling Nepal Communist Party (NCP).
In February, the apex court reinstated the dissolved House of Representatives, in a setback to Prime Minister Oli who was preparing for snap polls. Oli repeatedly defended his move to dissolve the House of Representatives, saying some leaders of his party were attempting to form a “parallel government".