Border row: Nepal dispatches team to inspect disputed land along China border

The Nepal government has formed a committee comprising senior government officials to inspect a remote piece of land in the country’s north along the China border as local officials claimed the land is being encroached upon by China

Sep 05, 2021
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Border row

The Nepal government has formed a committee comprising senior government officials to inspect a remote piece of land in the country’s north along the China border as local officials claimed the land is being encroached upon by China. However, the Chinese Embassy in Kathmandu denied the report, saying the country has no border dispute with Nepal. 

The border dispute is in a northern Humla district, some 670 km northwest of the capital Kathmandu. Local officials and leaders had reported that several pillars along the border were by the Chinese side and some of the pillars were further pushed and relocated deep into the Nepalese territory. 

The issue had long been suppressed by the earlier communist government in Kathmandu which even failed to acknowledge the border dispute publicly despite a confidential report-- later leaked to media-- indicated the same. 

In a cabinet meeting held earlier this week, the government formed a committee, headed by Jaya Narayan Acharya, the joint secretary in the Home Ministry, along with members of Nepal Police and the Survey Department. The team will file a report to the cabinet after inspecting the site, according to a report in The Kathmandu Post. 

Jeevan Bahadur Shahi, a member of the Karnali Assembly, the province where the district lies,  has been repeatedly demanding an investigation into the issue. He had earlier filed an independent report, detailing the damaged and replaced pillars.   

Nepali Congress Vice-president Bimalendra Nidhi, also a former deputy prime minister, had also supported Shahi’s demand and urged Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba to investigate the issue.

Significantly, the earlier government headed by former prime minister KP Shama Oli, a communist leader considered close to China, had never acknowledged the issue publicly. Furthermore, last week on Saturday, a day after the Chiese Embassy denied the charges, former prime minister KP Sharma Oli maintained there was no border dispute with China.

Significantly, the Nepali Congress, now the principal ruling party in the country, had raised the issue consistently in the past when they were in opposition. In September 2020, a team led by Nepali Congress leader Jeevan Bahadur Shahi had inspected the disputed region and concluded that China had encroached upon Nepali land.

(SAM)