A dispute has arisen in between India and Nepal over a road. India recently inaugurated a newly 80 KM long road to connects Pithoragarh, Uttrakhand to Lipulekh pass, near China border, aims to significantly reduce the time of Kailash Mansarovar Yatra.
Nepal objected to the newly link road and claims the territory at the Lipulekh pass around 400 sq km area east of Kali river in the tri-junction of Nepal, Tibet and India, through which the road passes as its own.
Objection by Nepal at this time is itself raising questions. in May 2015 China and India had signed an agreement to develop Lipulekh as a commercial passage, but at that time Nepal didn’t raised any objections but now suddenly Nepal has shown issues after the inauguration of the road.
Nepal referred to the 2014 agreement between Prime Ministers of both countries, for Foreign Secretaries to work out the “outstanding boundary issues” on Kalapani (where Lipulekh lies) and Susta, bordering Bihar.
According to Nepal’s Foreign Ministry, the unilateral decision to build a road there, is a breach of the 2014 agreement.
For evidence, Nepal has also referenced the 1816 Sugauli treaty between Nepal and East India Company.
Sugauli Treaty:- This treaty established the boundary line of Nepal, was signed on 2 December 1815 and ratified by 4 March 1816 between the East India Company and King of Nepal following the Anglo-Nepalese War of 1814-16.
The treaty were made after Nepal’s war with the British India due to which Nepal had to cede a large part of territory which currently forms the present Uttarakhand.
Defense Minister Rajnath Singh inaugurated the link road on 8 May and Nepal shows protest on 11 May. But in between both the incidents, one more incident happen in between India & China.
On 9 May, Several Indian and Chinese soldiers have been injured in a cross-border clash involving fist fights after a face off, although the matter resolved soon but many believes that, with this incident China’s trying make pressure on India in order to relief Pakistan, as few days ago there was a Terrorist attack in Kashmir.
Nepal raised question on 11 May, two day after face off incident. The timeline of the objection raised questions, as it may possible that China motivates Nepal to raise protest over the road in order to put more pressure on India.
Some more unanswered questions concrete the theory. Questions like, Why Nepal didn’t showed any strong objection on May 2015, when India & China signed an agreement to develop infrastructure.
Why Nepal isn’t seeking any questions on China as well, whereas India & China mutuality signed on the agreements.
Though there is possibility that the above questions is baseless and Nepal protest over link road is just a natural objection free from any influence.
The government of Nepal remains committed to seek diplomatic solutions to the boundary issues on the basis of historical treaty, documents, facts and maps in keeping with the spirit of close and friendly bilateral ties between the two countries.
Disclaimer: This is completely an opinionated post. The writer has no intention of hurting the sentiments of the readers. We whole heartedly welcome the different views, perspective and opinion of the readers.