Amidst Nepal dispute, India sends out subtle reminder on assistance
New Delhi, June 12: India has subtly reminded Nepal of the humanitarian and development assistance it had provided, including medicines to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic.
"Our multi-faceted bilateral partnership has expanded and diversified in recent years with increased focus and enhanced humanitarian and development assistance by the Government of India and connectivity projects in Nepal," Anurag Srivastava, MEA spokesperson said.
Nepal had alleged that India had encroached upon its territory by deploying soldiers, building a temple and creating an artificial river.
Nepal's Prime Minister, K P Oli said that India had built a Kali Temple, created an artificial Kali river and deployed Indian Army personnel in order encroach upon the Kalapani, Lipulekh and Limpiyadhura. He said that these earlier belonged to his country.
Oli also criticised Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister, Yogi Adityanath for advising Nepal for not committing the mistake of ratcheting up a territorial dispute with India. He said that these remarks were not acceptable to the people of Nepal.
Kalapani, Lipulekh and Limpiyadhura were based on historical records and India should return the areas it had encroached upon.
While India is watching the developments closely, the government had said that the revised official map was a unilateral act and not based on facts.
Anurag Srivastava, spokesperson Ministry of External Affairs had said that what Nepal did was contrary to the bilateral understanding to resolve outstanding boundary issues through diplomatic dialogue. Such artificial enlargement of territorial claims will not be accepted by India, he had also said.
India also urged Nepal to refrain from such unjustified cartographic assertion and respect India's sovereignty and territorial integrity. We hope that Nepalese leadership will create a positive atmosphere for diplomatic dialogue to resolve the outstanding boundary issues, the MEA spokesperson also said.
Last month Nepal's cabinet endorsed a new political map showing Lipulekh, Kalapani and Limpiyadhura under its territory, amid a border dispute with India.
The move announced by foreign minister Pradeep Kumar Gyawali came weeks after he said that efforts were on to resolve the border issue with India through diplomatic initiatives.
Nepal's ruling Nepal Communist Party lawmakers have also tabled a special resolution in Parliament demanding return of Nepal's territory in Kalapani, Limpiyadhura and Lipulekh.
The Lipulekh pass is a far western point near Kalapani. Both India and Nepal claim Kalapani as an integral part of their territory - India as part of Uttarakhand's Pithoragarh district and Nepal as part of Dharchula district.
Indian officials say that they are upset that Nepal did not wait for the foreign secretary level talks. The government had assured Kathmandu that the talks would take place once the threat from COVID-19 subsides. Nepal on the other hand claimed that a dialogue was sought in November last year itself.
It may be recalled that India had donated the antimalarial drug HCQ and 30,000 test kits to Nepal.