SAARC Nations sign Energy Pact on Concluding Day

Kathmandu, Nov 27: In a big development, the SAARC nations signed energy agreement on Thursday signalling to sort out the differences at the Summit and a step forward to end the hostilities between India and Pakistan.

Nepal Prime Minister Sushil Koirala said that the SAARC countries have agreed to give three months time for approval of regional motor vehicle and railway agreements, announcing the next summit would be held in Islamabad, Pakistan.

The energy pact was signed a day after Pakistan blocked the signing three key proposals initiated by India for greater regional integration. The summit, which started with a positive note, appeared as a flop show after Pakistan premier Nawaz Sharif objected to the agreements on road connectivity, railways and a framework for energy cooperation.

However, one agreement was signed on the concluding day. This is aimed at distribution and transmission of electricity. Sharif, who appeared to be unfriendly to his Indian counterpart Narendra Modi, both the leaders were seen shaking hands on Thursday and met briefly during a retreat at the Saarc Summit.

External affairs ministry spokesperson Syed Akbaruddin told PTI, "The two leaders exchanged pleasantries when they met for the first time after arriving here (in Nepal)."

Yesterday at the summit, PM Modi and Sharif did not even look at each other while sharing the dais and have shared cold vibes since the beginning of the SAARC summit.

However, the efforts made by Nepal prime minister Sushil Koirala finally worked to bring two leaders to Dhulikhel, where the retreat was being held on the second day of the two-day event, and appealed them to hold talks in an attempt to make the summit effective.

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