KATHMANDU, Nov 7: Minister for Foreign Affairs Pradeep Kumar Gyawali has said that Kalapani is clearly Nepal’s territory.
The Survey General of India, on Nov 2, released a new political map reflecting the newly formed Union Territories of Jammu and Kashmir Ladakh which placed the disputed area of Kalapani and Lipulekh claimed by Nepal inside its border.
“Encroachment of an inch of Nepal’s territory is not be tolerable. Kalapani is ours. If the area is placed in India’s map, this will be corrected through diplomatic efforts. Friendship is one thing, but border encroachment cannot be tolerated,” said Minister Gyawali.
The controversial Indian move to cut Kalapani and Lipulekh inside its border has faced serious objections across Nepal with student bodies and political leaders questioning the government’s resolve to defend Nepal’s territory as the government remained tightlipped even days after the release of the new map.
Following the mounting public pressure, the government made its stance on the Kalapani region clear stating the region is an integral part of Nepal and any unilateral decision to change border demarcation would be unacceptable, while calling for resolving the boundary issues through mutual consensus.
“Nepal is committed to protecting its international border,” said the Ministry of Foreign Ministry Nepal.
“Any border-related issue relating to the two friendly countries needs to be resolved through diplomatic channels on the basis of historical documents and evidence.”
“The Government of Nepal will not accept any unilateral decision,” it added.
Responding to Nepal’s reaction, Spokesperson of the Indian Ministry of External Affairs, Raveesh Kumar, stated that Indian map has accurately depicted the sovereign territory of India while claiming the new map has not revised the boundary.
“The boundary delineation exercise with Nepal is ongoing under the existing mechanism,” he said adding that India reiterate its commitment to finding a solution through dialogue.
Earlier, Surveyor General of India Girish Kumar had insisted India had been using the same map for a few decades.
Kalapani is a part of Darchula district in Sudurpaschim province, which is occupied by Indian troops since the India-China war in 1962.