Nepal Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli has been unwell lately. Recently, when news of his impending resignation was rife, he was admitted to a hospital for treatment. He escalated diplomatic tensions with India by updating the map of Nepal claiming Indian territories for the country. Now, after allegations of encroachment of land, KP Sharma Oli has taken to claiming that India has engaged in ‘cultural encroachment’.
During a recent event to commemorate Bhanubhakta’s birth anniversary, the Nepalese Prime Minister claimed that India had created a ‘fake Ayodhya’ in India when, according to him, it is a village in Birgunj in Nepal. “Although the real Ayodhya lies at Thori in the west of Birgunj, India have claimed the Indian site as the birthplace of Lord Ram,” said KP Sharma Oli.
Real Ayodhya lies in Nepal, not in India. Lord Ram is Nepali not Indian: Nepali media quotes Nepal Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli (file pic) pic.twitter.com/k3CcN8jjGV— ANI (@ANI) July 13, 2020
He said, “We also believe that deity Sita got married to Prince Ram of India. Actually, Ayodhya is a village lying west of Birgunj.” “Ayodhya is at Thori, west of Birgunj, Balmiki Ashram is in Nepal and the holy place where King Dasharath had executed the rites to get the son is in Ridi,” he added. The Nepalese Prime Minister stated, “Dasharath’s son Ram was not an Indian and Ayodhya is also in Nepal.” “We did not give Sita, who was born in Janakpur, to an Indian prince but Sita was married to Ram of Ayodhya, not of India,” he said.
Opposition parties in Nepal have slammed KP Sharma Oli for making such ridiculous remarks. Co-chairperson of Rastriya Prajatantra Party Kamal Thapa it does not behove a Prime Minister to make such baseless, unproven claims. “It looks like the PM wants to further spoil Nepal-India relations rather than working to resolve tensions,” Thapa said.
It is pertinent to note that the birthplace of Shri Ram has always been regarded as Ram Janmabhoomi in Ayodhya. His birthplace was the site of a dispute centuries old. Hindus secured the right to build a Temple at the sacred site through a Supreme Court verdict in 2019. The Ram Janmabhoomi Movement, which was launched to reclaim Shri Ram’s birthplace, has altered the course of Indian history for all eternity. KP Sharma Oli did admit while making the ridiculous claim that scholars would not agree with him on this ‘new fact’.
Tensions between India and Nepal
Nepal’s lower house of parliament passed an amendment recently to update the country’s map including Indian areas of Limpiyadhura, Lipulekh, and Kalapani in the constitution of the country. The bill was supported by all the 258 lawmakers present and voting.
The move came on the heels of the endorsement extended by Nepal’s House of Representatives on June 10 to have a proposal seeking consideration of the constitution amendment bill for change of country’s map following a long discussion. India has consistently rejected these claims, terming it untenable.
Recently, a Nepalese lawmaker Sarita Giri was removed from the House of Representatives for taking a pro-India stand.