Oli government under pressure to speak up against China's encroachment in Nepal

The K.P. Sharma Oli government in Nepal is now facing increasing heat and is under pressure from several quarters to speak up against the boundary encroachment by China

Oct 13, 2020

The K.P. Sharma Oli government in Nepal is now facing increasing heat and is under pressure from several quarters to speak up against the boundary encroachment by China.

Recent reports have suggested that China has encroached upon Nepali territory in Humla district and one boundary pillar no 12 has been constructed by the Chinese without notice of the Nepalese side.

Without a bilateral agreement, no boundary pillar can be repaired by either side.

A team of the Nepali Congress, the opposition party of Nepal, led by a lawmaker Jeevan Bahadur Shahi, recently visited the northern border of Nepal, spent 11 days in the treacherous Himalayan region and found that pillar no 12 was damaged and erected inside Nepali territory.

Now ruling party leaders have also begun to speak against land encroached by China in Nepal's Humla district.

The local elected representatives have also accused China of encroaching upon Nepali territory and asked with the government to send a fact-finding team to find out the truth.

Shahi told IANS the China side has recently replaced the boundary pillar no 12 so that a large chunk of Nepali territory has slipped into China.

Though the Oli administration in Nepal has kept denying that China has encroached on Nepali territory, a senior ruling party leader, Bhim Rawal, on Monday urged the government to make public the facts about the Nepal-China border issue.

He also demanded an on-site study on the Nepal-China border in Namkha Rural Municipality of Humla, Limi Lolungjang by a team comprising government officials , including the Department of Survey and Ministry of Foreign Affairs among others.

Rawal, who is a staunch opponent of Oli, said that the issue related to the territorial integrity of the country should be resolved through an objective way.

About his findings, Shahi said that China has unilaterally repaired and replaced the boundary pillar which is against the border protocol signed between two countries in the past.

"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 kilometre inside our territory after replacing the boundary pillar," said Shahi.

During the inspection across the border, when the Shahi-led team reached nearby pillar no 11, the Chinese side allegedly fired tear gas shells targeting them. "We noticed that a huge Chinese force was deployed across Nepal-China border," said Shahi, "We have poor presence on the border. Since the disputed area is far from human settlement, the Nepali side hardly rarely goes across for inspection owing to high-altitude, difficult geographical terrain, cold weather among others," he added.

"Some of our team members who had visited close to the pillar area had felt a burning sensation in his eyes and suspected that it might have been caused by tear gas canisters," he further said.

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