The Union cabinet has cleared the plant to build a new bridge connecting India and Nepal, over the Mahakali river


  • Close relations since ancient times: the relations between two countries have come to be broad based and traditionally been very close since the ancient times
    • It has been possible due to the geographical contiguity and proximity as well as common religious, linguistic and cultural identities between the two countries
    • The relations are woven into fabric by cultural, linguistic and racial threats
  • Cultural ties: there are ethnic and linguistic similarities among the people living along the two sides of Indo Nepal border
    • Matrimonial relations also add a new dimension to the Indo Nepal relations, according to the records thousands of marriages take place among the border inhabitants every year
  • Common principles: the commitment to the principles of peaceful coexistence, sovereign equality and understanding of each others aspirations has been the base for form foundations of bilateral relations
  • Geographical proximity: India and Nepal share a 1700 km stretch of open border.
    • It has held to foster friendly relations, mutual understanding and cultural ties among the 2 countries

Indo-Nepal Friendship Treaty, 1950

  • Security relations: Bilateral relationship was strengthened after signing of the Indo-Nepal Treaty of Peace and Friendship that defined security relations between the two countries
  • Open border: According to the provisions of the Treaty the border between the two countries would remain open to the great advantage of the people of the two countries
  • No need of visa: Hence, there is no need of passport or visa formalities among the border inhabitants aur other nationals of Nepal in India
  • Benefits to people: The border inhabitants have been greatly benefited with regard to education, health, trade and commerce, employment opportunities and other economic activities because of this unique arrangement
  • National treatment to people of other country: the treaty has committed to provide national treatment to the people of other country in business, trade and other economic activities
    • Clause 6 of the Treaty: people of one country have the right to conduct industrial and other economic activity in the other
    • Clause 7: allows the citizens of one country, the right of residence, ownership of property, participation in the national trade and commercial activities, movement and other privileges in the other country concerned


  • Nepalese claim over Indian territories: Nepal proclaims 400 km2 of Indian land in Kalapani, Lipulekh and Limpiyadhura as part of Nepal's secretary
    • India and Nepal claim the same disputed territory on the respective political maps
    • India has inherited the boundary with Nepal established between Nepal and the East India company in the Treaty of sugauli in 1816.
    • Kali river constituted the boundary and the territory to its East was Nepal, the dispute relates to the origin of Kali
  • Infrastructure projects: inauguration of a crucial road going through Lipulekh to Kailash and Mansarovar by India for building connectivity with the Tibetan plateau has frayed the relations
    • The Nepal government has protested, raising concerns that it could challenge the national sovereignty and status quo, fuelling #back of India movement in Nepal
  • Interfering in Nepalese constitution & unofficial blockade: India got blamed for interfering in constitution drafting in Nepal in 2015 and then there were allegations about an unofficial blockade generating widespread resentment against the country
    • It reinforced the notion that Nepali nationalism and anti indianism were two sides of the same coin

Concerns due to China

  • Once considered as a buffer state between India and China, Nepal is now showing an inclination towards Beijing
  • China is trying to stimulate and tempt Nepal with multiple aids, economic growth and acquisition by coordinating with the present ruling party of Nepal
  • The Chinese sharp power in Nepal comes with massive propaganda and national interests with implications for India's influence in the region
  • China is pursuing a more assertive foreign policy and considers Nepal as an important element in its growing South Asian footprint


  • Restoration of peace: As democratic ethics laden nations, Indo-Nepal border issue is solvable with Restoration of peace treaty
    • Indian needs to adopt a new foreign policy to retrieve peaceful treaties with the new approach for cooperation with Nepal
  • Neighbourhood first policy: India has always admired the neighbourhood first policy, the regional cooperation in the South Asian region necessitated fostering by India
  • Regional cooperation: India requires to get its acts together and promote the regional cooperation structures with and intergovernmental organization uniting the South Asian region like SAARC and BIMSTEC
  • Emphasising on Nepal's  sovereign status and independent policy choices and helping Nepal in exercising these is in India's interest
  • As long as the principles of non interference and peaceful coexistence are respected and high level of political engagement is perceived there will be bonhomie and cooperation between the leaders of India and Nepal

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