New Delhi, August 8: After months of standoff at Sino-Indian border, China has reached out to Nepal over the Doklam issue. Adding another dimension to the issue, Beijing is trying to play on Nepal’s fears of Indian aggression in the disputed Kalapani area which is home to India-China-Nepal trijunction.Also Read - Covid to Make a Comeback in India? China, Russia, UK Report Significant Resurgence in Cases | Key Points
Last week, China reached out to the Nepal government on the Doklam issue in Delhi, Beijing and Kathmandu, the Times of India reported. China’s discussion with Nepal over the issue holds significance as India shares two tri-junctions with Nepal and China in a disputed area. Also Read - T20 World Cup: It's a Morale-Boosting Match, Says Shoaib Akhtar As he Reveals Why it is Important For Pakistan to Beat India
India shares two tri-junctions with Nepal and China — Lipulekh in western Nepal and Jhinsang Chuli on the eastern side. Lipulekh is a cause of concern for Nepal as it accuses India of having forcibly occupied territory in the Kalapani area. Also Read - Breaking: Poland Recognises India’s Covishield Vaccine, Exempts Travellers From Quarantine Rules
Beijing is believed to have briefed former Nepal prime minister KP Sharma Oli over the issue during his visit to Shigatse in Tibet in July. Even during his visit to Kathmandu, China Vice Premier Wang Yang is expected to raise the issue with Nepal leaders.
Nepal Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba is expected to visit India in August and it is reported that he may be under pressure to seek a review from India and China of their agreement in 2015 to develop Lipulekh Pass in the disputed Kalapani area as a trade transit point. Official sources said Nepal has given no indication that Deuba will take up the issue with India during his visit. But there have been “informal discussions” between the two nations over the issue, according to diplomatic sources.
India and China have been locked in a standoff in Doklam since June 16 after Chinese troops began constructing a road near the Bhutan trijunction. Bhutan has protested to China, saying the area belonged to it and accused Beijing of violating agreements that aim to maintain the status quo until the boundary dispute is resolved. India says the Chinese action to construct the road was unilateral and changes the status quo. It fears the road would allow China to cut off India’s access to its northeastern states.