The Nepali Congress (NC) has reiterated that China has encroached upon Nepalese territory and said that the central government’s silence on the matter is shameful and condemnable. The main opposition party also described the silence of the Nepal Communist Party (NCP) as treasonous. The encroachment reportedly occurred at Limi of Namkha Rural Municipality in Humla district.
The NC also accused the government of cover-up for issuing a ‘hasty denial’ even when the CDO-led inspection team was inspecting the border areas. The party called the actions of the government ‘anti-national’. They demanded that the government send a protest note to China over illegal encroachment of their territory and seek a resolution through dialogue and diplomacy.
Nepalese lawmaker Jeevan Bahadur Shahi said, “A team of experts should visit the Nepal-China border in Humla district to make a scientific assessment of what China has done. Our findings have clearly shown that China has entered into one and half kilometers inside our territory after replacing the boundary pillar.” Earlier, reports had emerged in the media that asserted the same.
Meanwhile, Indian Army Chief General Navrane will be visiting Nepal in the month of November. The timing of the visit is significant given reports of Chines encroachment at the China-Nepal border. “The visit was approved by the government of Nepal on 3rd February 2020 but was postponed due to lockdown in both the countries,” the Defence Ministry of Nepal said in a statement. The objective of the visit is to “confer the honorary rank of general of the Nepali Army to General Naravane in an investiture ceremony during this visit”. The ceremony is a 70-year old tradition, an arrangement between the armies of the two countries since 1950.
Geja Sharma Wagle, an expert on strategic affairs and foreign policy, said that the visit “is an olive branch from India to normalise ruptured relations due to the longstanding territorial dispute. I think this visit will positively contribute towards reviving much-needed dialogue between the two countries.” “The visit is meaningful as it comes amid a diplomatic standoff between the two countries,” he added.
Tensions had erupted between India and Nepal recently with the Himalayan country releasing a new map claiming Indian territory. Its Prime Minister K.P. Oli also made bizarre comments going so far as to claim that Shri Ram was born in Nepal in a bid to antagonise India.