Amid frictions with India over Kalapani border issue, Nepal govt tables controversial bill to change map
Kathmandu | Jagran News Desk: Amid frictions with India over Kalapani border issue, the Nepalese government on Sunday tabled a constitutional amendment bill to update the map of Nepal which includes an additional 370 sq. km of India.
The bill, which was tabled by Nepalese Law Minister Shiva Maya Tumbahamphe, seeks to modify the map of Nepal to include Indian territories of Limpiyadhura, Kapalpani and Lipulekh.
The government moved the bill after Nepali Congress on Saturday announced that it would vote in favour of the amendment. Earlier, the bill was supposed to be presented in the Parliament on Wednesday but the country’s government had sought more time to discuss the matter internally.
Now with the support of the Nepali Congress, the KP Sharma-led government would be able to pass the bill easily. According to Nepal’s law, a constitutional amendment requires two-third majority vote.
It generally takes a month to pass a constitution amendment bill in Nepal but according to a NDTV report, the Nepali parliament may bypass several procedures to get the bill passed in the next ten days, looking at the people’s sentiments.
The Nepali government had drawn frictions from India after it cleared the map that depicted Lipulekh, Kalapani and Limpiyadhura as its territory.
Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) spokesperson Anurag Srivastava said that such artificial enlargement of territorial claims will not be accepted by India while adding that it was important to create an “environment of trust and confidence for dialogue”.
“We note that this matter is receiving careful consideration in Nepal, taking its seriousness into account,” he had said.
The ties between the two countries came under strain after Defence Minister Rajnath Singh inaugurated an 80-km-long strategically crucial road connecting the Lipulekh pass with Dharchula in Uttarakhand on May 8.
Nepal reacted sharply to the inauguration of the road claiming that it passed through Nepalese territory. India rejected the claim asserting that the road lies completely within its territory.
The Lipulekh pass is a far western point near Kalapani, a disputed border area between Nepal and India. 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.
(With PTI inputs)
Posted By: Aalok Sensharma