History of Nepal-Russia Relations

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Flags of Nepal and Russian Federation

   Nepal-Russia relationship starts with the historical visit of one of the renowned scholars Dr. Ivan Pavloviech Minayev from St. Petersburg University in 1875 to Kathmandu and his invaluable contributions. He came to Nepal in search of oriental hidden culture and treatises. Due to the restrictive policy of Nepal, he had no access beyond Kathmandu valley; he had, however studied Nepalese history, culture, socio-cultural and religious diversity in depth and introduced the Western people about Nepalese heritage through his several publications. His major contributions were in the field of the study of Buddhism as practiced in Nepal and the unique cultural harmony that prevailed in the Kathmandu Valley. He introduced Nepalese culture and religion, especially Buddhism and Pali literature, to Russian people. Prof. Minayev is considered to be the pioneer liaison between Nepal and Russia in establishing the ties between the people of two countries situated far away from each other and embodying different culture and traditions. Therefore it’s fair to say, that scholarly pursuits were the precursors of formal Nepal-Russia relations

   In 1950s, modern era link-man, a Russian entrepreneur Boris Lissanevitch came to Kathmandu on the invitation of late king Tribhuwan. He was a visionary entrepreneur who saw prospects of hotel business and tourism industry in Nepal. He introduced Russian cuisine in Nepal. He was instrumental in developing linkage between the king and the politicians of various nations with these of Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR). Boris, as a Russian, loved Nepal deeply and contributed in the field of development of tourism industry in Nepal.

   With passing of time, Nepal and Soviet Union established diplomatic relations on June 5 - July 9, 1956. Both countries resumed embassies. Soviet embassy opened in Kathmandu on 4th October, 1959. Nepalese embassy was opened in Moscow on 27 July, 1961. Mr. Ram Prasad Manandhar was appointed first non-residential Nepalese ambassador to USSR. The first residential Nepalese ambassador to USSR was Mr. Jharendra Narayan Singh, who presented his letter of Credence in Kremlin on July 27, 1961. Likewise, Mikhail Alexecvich Menshikov was appointed as first Ambassador of USSR to Nepal.

   Nepal-Russia Friendship Association was established on July 1956.

   In 1958, late King Mahendra paid a state visit to Soviet Union, which helped solidify the diplomatic relations between the two countries. Soon in 1959, Economic and Technical Cooperation was signed between the two countries. Similarly, from the Soviet Union President Marshal Voroshilov paid a state visit to Nepal in 1960. These efforts forged an era of profound scientific, technological, and industrial collaboration between Soviet Union and Nepal.

   Similarly, as a part of strengthening that cooperation, Soviet Culture Centre was established in 1979 in Nepal. The Centre has been continuing it services ever since. During its first decade, Soviet Culture Centre was considered a great intellectual and cultural centre in Kathmandu that attracted youth like a magnet. Nepali youth were inspired by the scientific and technological program of the Soviet Union. They demonstrated strong interest in studying in Soviet Union and attended Soviet Universities in large numbers. That helped to create a pool of technological knowledge and skill base in Nepal.

   After dissolving of the Soviet Union in 1991, Soviet Culture Centre had just finished constructing its own building in Kamalpokhari. The Centre moved to it's own Kamalpokhari building from its rented place in Putalisadak with the new name – Russian Centre of Science and Culture (RCSC) in 1993.

   In post USSR scenario, Nepal and Russia both started to undergo major structural changes that necessitated the relation and mode of cooperation to be re-adjusted. Subsequently, both countries are making effort to find new and effective dimensions in their relationships. Even during this time of rediscovering, Nepal-Russia bilateral relationship has remained superbly stable and friendly. We want to make our relations to be vigorously engaging and mutually rewarding in the days ahead.

   With that various programs had been organized at RCSC throughout the year 2016 to commemorate this historic relationship between the two countries.

LONG-LIVE NEPAL-RUSSIA RELATIONS!

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Late Prime Minister Krishna P. Bhattarai observing the model of RCSC building on the occasion of stone foundation laying program
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Late King Birendra Addressing the Function at Peoples Hall in Moscow
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Nepal’s representative former Minister of science and technology Ganesh Shah with the head of Rossotrudnichestvo L.N.Glebova on the occasion of 90 Years of Rossotrudnichestvo in Moscow
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The representative of Rossotrudnichestvo in Nepal S.Simakov presenting souvenirs to the then Deputy Prime Minister of Nepal C.Mainali