She joined her Bangladesh counterpart Md Abdul Hamid and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina at the celebrations of Bangabandhu’s birth centenary and golden jubilee of Bangladesh’s independence in Dhaka on Monday.
“As an excellent orator, organiser and crusader, Bangabandhu won the hearts and minds of the people of Bangladesh and attained the goal of creating a new nation. He is a revered leader of this region,” Bhandari said.
She hailed Bangladesh’s development to fulfil Bangabandhu’s dreams, describing him as “a charismatic leader, person of determination and courage and stout freedom fighter”.
“As the celebrations on Bangabandhu's birth centenary [are] going on, I consider the continued progress of Bangladeshi people a fitting tribute to his contributions to the nation-building process of Bangladesh,” Bhandari said.
“As a close friend, Nepal would like to see continued economic progress and development of Bangladesh,” the Nepalese president said, noting that her country was one of the first to recognise Bangladesh after independence.
She remembered Bangabandhu’s efforts to expand the reach of Bangladesh to the international community during his short period of leadership of the country after independence.
“Now, we are happy to see the celebrations of the birth centenary of Bangabandhu across Bangladesh in recognition of his role, contribution and sacrifice for the independence of Bangladesh,” Bhandari said.
The first Nepalese president to visit Bangladesh, Bhandari is accompanied by several high-ranking officials, including Nepal’s Foreign Minister Pradeep Kumar Gyawali.
She paid respects to the Liberation War martyrs at the National Martyrs' Memorial in Savar before joining the celebrations at the National Parade Ground.
In the evening, the Nepalese president was scheduled to meet Hamid at the Bangabhaban where several memoranda of understanding were to be signed.
A cultural programme was slated for later in the night at Bangabhaban’s Darbar Hall which will be followed by dinner.
On Tuesday morning, she will visit Bangabandhu Memorial Museum at Dhanmondi Road No. 32 and pay tribute to the Father of the Nation.
Bhandari will join a programme at the Embassy of Nepal in Dhaka in the afternoon before departing Dhaka around 3:30pm.
President Hamid travelled to Nepal at Bhandari’s invitation in 2019.
President of the Maldives Ibrahim Mohamed Solih and Prime Minister of Sri Lanka Mahinda Rajapaksa have already visited Bangladesh to join the celebrations, while Prime Minister of Bhutan Lotay Tshering and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi are among the invitees.