Nepal-India border talks, supposed to be held every year, in limbo since 2019

File: An Armed Police Force staffer guards Nepal-India border
File: An Armed Police Force staffer guards Nepal-India border

Kathmandu, August 26

Whereas issues related to a failure to ensure effective border management are rife, Nepal-India border management talks have not taken place since 2019 although they were supposed to happen every year.

Officials on both sides blame the Covid-19 pandemic that troubled the world since early 2020 as a reason why the talks could not take place. However, developments of incidents show the map dispute between the two countries about the Kalapani-Limpiyadhura region has affected the dialogue process.

While other bilateral mechanisms have done their meetings regularly virtually, India appears disinterested in the border issue.

It has been learned that Nepal has proposed twice holding a meeting even virtually since then, but India did not respond to the proposal both of the times.

The two countries had formed a Boundary Working Group (BWG) in 2014 to discuss and resolve all existing and potential border issues. The group was mandated to hold a meeting every year, but no meeting has taken place since the sixth one in Dehradun in 2019.

There are two separate bodies, an official team and a joint field survey team, working under the BWG. They have also turned dysfunctional with the BWG failing to hold a meeting.

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