Prince Harry's State Tour of Nepal The Royal Speech

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Posting candid pictures, eating with the locals, playing Holi festival, visiting World Heritage Sites of the Himalayan country and participating in a building project concluded the first official state tour of Nepal by HRH Prince Harry.

Greeting the gathering at the British Embassy in Nepal with a traditional ‘Namaste’, HRH Prince Harry acknowledged the 200 year partnership between the people of the two countries.

The aim of the state visit was to shed light on the progress made on the rebuilding of Nepal after the devastating earthquakes in April 2015, and to reiterate that the country is ready to go back to normalcy.

HRH Prince Harry hailed the inspiring leadership of a 15-year-old Purushottam Suwal, the chairperson of the community committee at Byasi camp that accommodates 80 families affected by the earthquake. In the Himalayan village of Leorani, he also met an 86-year-old Ghurka widow Mangali Gurung Tamang, who is being supported by the Ghurka Welfare Scheme. It was in this village, where he was honoured as the head of the village with a traditional feta turban. The visit to Nepal sheds a new light on his association with Gurkhas during his Afghanistan tour. The British and Nepalese soldiers fought side by side in Afghanistan.

Applauding the resilience of the Nepalese people, the young Royal recounted how classes were being held in makeshift classrooms at the site of the destroyed school. He also enjoyed a game of volleyball and the celebration of the colourful festival of Holi. Furthermore, the red-haired Royal emphasised the importance of international cooperation and citizen initiatives in times of tragic disasters. Prince Harry spent a night with a local family and ate a traditional meal as well. Finally, ending the speech on a positive note, he invited travellers to pay a visit to the top attractions of Nepal such as Patan Durbar Square, Bardia National Park and Himalyan foothills and get to know the welcoming locals.

On the last night of his first official Nepal state tour, HRH Prince Harry addressed gender issues prevalent across cultures. “There are way too many obstacles between girls and the opportunities they deserve,” he said.

Nostalgic, the youngest son of Prince Charles and Princess Diana remembered his mother and 1993 Nepal visit of his parents. Besides expressing solidarity and paying tribute to the victims of the earthquake, the Royal also contribute his bit to the ongoing disaster relief programme.

Posting candid pictures, eating with the locals, playing Holi festival, visiting World Heritage Sites of the Himalayan country and participating in a building project concluded the trip.

UK and Nepal - Historical and Business Ties

Being the largest bilateral partner and donor for Nepal, the UK has had friendly ties with the South Asian country. It is further cemented by the fact that the Gurkhas - a noted martial community of Nepal – have been recruited for the British Army since the 19th century following the Treaty of Sugaul 1814 between the British India and Nepal. Subsequently, the Indian Independence made way for the Tripartite Agreement of 1947 among Nepal, India and the UK, according to which the 2nd, 6th, 7th and 10th Gurkha Rifles were included in the British Army while the remaining became part of the Indian army.

Various organisations in the UK and Nepal offer support to the martial community. The Gurkha Welfare Trust (GWT) provides aid and support pertaining to the financial, medical and development of the Gurkha veterans and their families and communities in Nepal and UK, while the Gurkha Brigade Association represents Brigade of Gurkhas of the British of all ranks; serving and retired. Department for International Development and Team Rubicon UK continue to offer earthquake relief programmes.

According to Nepal Britain Chamber of Commerce & Industry (NBCCI), 1995, UK exports aircraft and spare parts, petroleum/chemical products, automobile and heavy machinery parts, electrical goods, gold, textile, cosmetics. UK also imports Nepalese silverware, jewellery, handicraft woollen/leather goods, garments, paper and other products.

Sources: | British Embassy in Kathmandu | The Gurkha Welfare Trust | | Gurkha Brigade Association | |

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