India and Nepal's "ever-strengthening" friendship and closeness will benefit the entire humanity amid the kind of global conditions that are emerging, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi said in a special 20-minute address in Lumbini on the sidelines of Buddha Jayanti celebrations.
The ties between the two countries are unshakable like the Himalayas, said Narendra Modi, who was in Lumbini on the occasion of Buddha Purnima at the invitation of his counterpart Sher Bahadur Deuba, made the remarks while addressing an international conference on Buddhism, reports the Times of India.
The visit also saw a bilateral meeting between the two leaders following which India and Nepal signed six agreements.
Modi, who attended the 2566th Buddha Jayanti celebrations at the International Convention Center and Meditation Hall at Lumbini, was accompanied by Deuba and his spouse Dr Arzu Rana Deuba.
Several Nepalese ministers were among the other dignitaries present.
Modi together with Deuba participated in the "shilanyas" (foundation stone laying) ceremony for the construction of the India International Centre for Buddhist Culture and Heritage at a plot in Lumbini belonging to the International Buddhist Confederation (IBC) based in New Delhi.
The Indian PM said both countries will work towards solving global problems with Buddha's ideologies.
"Buddha is the embodiment of the collective understanding of humanity," Modi told a gathering in Lumbini of some 2,500 people that included monks, Buddhist scholars and international participants.