Recently, India’s long-standing ally and neighbor, Nepal undertook some activities which have jeopardized the hard work and toil of the diplomats in maintaining these relations. While many theories started to float immediately once the friendly neighbor’s action turned hostile, many such self proclaimed intellectuals and international relations experts termed it as a fiasco of the foreign policy of the Indian government or some termed it as the rise of the landlocked nation.
Let us have a look at the major event in the recent months that have been building up to the present day scenario.
November 2019- As the Indian parliament passed the landmark bill, the “J&K Reorganisation Act, 2019” on 5th August 2019 whereby it bifurcated the state of Jammu & Kashmir into two separate Union Territories and a State.
Subsequently, the Indian government released the new map of the Republic in India in the month of November in 2019 in which the so-called ‘disputed’ land of Kalapani was included in the Indian territory, there was a reactionary discomfort shown by Nepal.
January 2020- The Indian government inaugurated a road in the region mentioned above, which was under work since the year 2008 and while it wasn’t opposed before, there was again uneasiness by the Nepalese side.
May 2020- In the most recent part of developments, there was a revision in the map by Nepal in which they included the disputed region of ‘Kalapani’ in their map. The Indian side condemned this move as many experts voiced their opinions.
June 2020- The event which has pressed the button for aggression is the activity done by the Nepalese police officers. According to reports, Nepalese guards opened firing on the Indian side and shot around 17 bullets in which an Indian farmer lost his life and three civilians were wounded.
Following this, the parliament of Nepal passed the new map proposed by the Nepalese government which has further raised the eyebrows.
Prominently, this dispute is accredited to the following two reasons:
Interference of China:
India and Nepal are primarily having differences for the region of Kalapani. This area is locked between India, Nepal, and Tibet, lying at a significant altitude, this remains strategically important for India to keep a vigil on China. Therefore, China wants India to lose its control over this region. India and China are also having a standoff so this backdoor entry of Nepal can be China’s move to divert India from the logjam with it. China has also constantly interfered in the internal polity of Nepal since it has got a communist government and there have been claims that it is providing under the table support to the ruling party.
Nepal internal political turmoil:
The current ruling party of Nepal, viz, Nepal Communist Party was formed after merging two of China’s communist ideological political parties in 2018, consequently, the leader of one of this party was made the Prime Minister while the other leader was left empty-handed which caused dissatisfaction among him and his loyalists. This has caused differences in opinion within the government itself. Therefore, political analysts deem this action by the Nepalese government and particularly PM KP Oli as an act to raise nationalistic hysteria and make a public statement about his ability to lead the nation and to make his appearance as a strong leader who can undertake stringent actions if needed.