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Nepal steps up border road work amid row with India

The Nepal government has expedited the process of construction of the Darchula-Tinkar Road, also known as Mahakali corridor, near the India-Nepal border adjoining Pithoragarh amid a territorial dispute with its giant neighbor, India.

Since the unprecedented face-off in Ladakh’s Galwan valley on June 15, in which 20 Indian soldiers and an unknown number of People’s Liberation Army (PLA) troops were killed, Beijing has been using its diplomatic heft through its regional allies to put pressure on New Delhi, claim Indian analysts. The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) regime has invested heavily in the countries neighboring India, resulting in unprecedented dependence of South Asia on China.

Bhutan, which has a good relation with both India and China, has stopped irrigation water to some farmers in Assam, affecting thousands of farmers in the region.

The aim of this Nepali road construction, sources said, is to “minimize the dependence of Nepalese citizens on Indian roads”.

The road will also provide direct access to the China border, which lies beyond Tinkar. This will also enable Nepalese tour operators to take pilgrims to Kailash Mansarovar through this route.

The escalation of work on the road — which had been sanctioned as far back as 2008 but was being constructed at an extremely slow pace — comes in the backdrop of souring of relations between India and Nepal.

The relation turned sour after Nepal’s national assembly passed the controversial bill on its updated political administrative map which includes parts of controversial territory, which India also claims, escalating the border dispute. The New Map Amendment Bill (Coat of Arms) refers to an updated map which shows strategically important territories of Kalapani, Lipulekh and Limpiyadhura as territories of Nepal.

The Nepalese move came after India built a road to on the disputed territory.

The government in New Delhi called the parliament move a violation and an artificial enlargement of claims. (Web Desk)

 

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