The government of KP Sharma Oli in Nepal is facing growing heat and is under pressure from many quarters to speak up against China’s border intrusion.
Recent reports have indicated that China has invaded the territory of Nepal in the Humla district and that one boundary pillar, No 12, has been built by the Chinese without warning from the Nepalese side.
No boundary pillar can be repaired by either side without a bilateral agreement.
The Nepalese Congress team, the opposition party of Nepal, headed by lawmaker Jeevan Bahadur Shahi, recently visited the northern border of Nepal, spent 11 days in the treacherous Himalayan region, and found that pillar 12 had been destroyed and erected within Nepal. Now leaders of the ruling party have also started to speak out against land invaded by China in the Humla district of Nepal.
Local elected officials have accused China of encroaching on the territory of Nepal and asked the government to send a fact-finding team to find out the facts.
Shahi told IANS that China had recently replaced the 12th boundary pillar so that a significant portion of the territory of Nepal had fallen into China.
Although the Oli administration in Nepal has continued to deny that China has invaded the territory of Nepal, Bhim Rawal, the leader of the ruling party, urged the government on Monday to make public the facts on the question of the border between Nepal and China.
He also called for an on-site analysis on the border between Nepal and China in the Namkha Rural Municipality of Humla, Limi Lolungjang, by a team of government officials, including the Department of Survey and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, among others.
Rawal, who is a staunch opponent of Oli, said that the issue of the territorial integrity of the country should be resolved in an impartial manner.
Shahi claimed that China has unilaterally remedied and replaced the boundary pillar against the border protocol signed between the two countries in the past.
“A team of experts should visit the Nepal-China border in Humla district to make a scientific assessment of what China has done. Our findings have clearly shown that China has entered into one and a half kilometer inside our territory after replacing the boundary pillar,” said Shahi.
During the inspection across the border, when the Shahi-led team reached nearby pillar no 11, the Chinese side allegedly fired tear gas shells targeting them. “We noticed that a huge Chinese force was deployed across Nepal-China border,” said Shahi, “We have a poor presence on the border. Since the disputed area is far from human settlement, the Nepali side hardly rarely goes across for inspection owing to high-altitude, difficult geographical terrain, cold weather among others,” he added.
“Some of our team members who had visited close to the pillar area had felt a burning sensation in his eyes and suspected that it might have been caused by tear gas canisters,” he further said.