October 17, 2015
Nepal’s Deputy Prime Minister Kamal Thapa arrived here today to hold talks with External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj during which the Indian side is expected to convey its concerns over the continued unrest in the Himalayan nation.
On his first foreign visit after assuming office, Thapa was optimistic about its outcome and had said that it will enhance the relations between the two countries. He is also the country’s Foreign Minister.
“The visit will provide an opportunity to discuss all issues of mutual concern as well as review and further strengthen India-Nepal relations,” Spokesperson in the External Affairs Ministry Vikas Swarup told reporters here.
During his three-day visit, Thapa will be holding extensive talks with Swaraj.
Thapa is also the coordinator of a three-member team formed by the Nepal government to hold talks with Indian authorities to end blockade of key trade points by Indian- origin Madhesi people who are opposed to splitting the country into seven provinces.
On the supplies of commodities to Nepal from the Indian side which were getting affected due to protests there, the spokesperson said Indian trucks are waiting to enter Nepal, which would happen once the political situation on the Nepal side becomes more conducive.
Noting that a long line of freight trucks were waiting to cross over to Nepal due to the problem of “disruption on the Nepalese side of the border”, he said whenever the disruptions, or protests on the Nepalese side, have slightly eased, “we have tried to send supplies across the border”.
Thapa’s visit comes at a “difficult” time for India and Nepal ties after Kathmandu alleged that New Delhi has imposed an economic blockade on the country following the announcement of its new Constitution, which is being seen as against the interest of Madhesi community living in the Terai region of the Himalayan nation.
India sees no merit in Nepal’s complaints that it was being “choked” and deprived of essential supplies by it. — PTI