Nepal protesting at someone else’s behest, says Army Chief : The Tribune India

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Nepal protesting at someone else’s behest, says Army Chief

Nepal protesting at someone else’s behest, says Army Chief


Tribune News Service

New Delhi, May 15

Amid an ongoing India-Nepal diplomatic row, Army Chief General MM Naravane on Friday said there had never been an issue about the tri-junction (of India-China-Nepal) and added that Nepal might have raised the issue at ‘someone else’s behest’.

'No issue about tri-junction'

We have made a road west of the Kali river. Nepal has accepted its territory is to the east of Kali. There has never been an issue about tri-junction… Nepal may have raised the issue at someone else's behest — Gen MM Naravane, Army Chief

Though he did not name China, the hint was amply clear as Beijing was the only interested party to it. Nepal has been protesting after India opened a road on May 8 till Lipulekh pass in Uttrakahand for connecting India with Kailash Mansarover in Tibet. General Naravane was answering questions after a talk, “Covid and Indian Army: Responses and Beyond”, at the Manohar Parrikar Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses via video-conferencing.

One being asked why Nepal was protesting on our road across Lipulekh and why it had decided to set up a border post at the spot, the Army Chief said there was no contradiction in Lipulekh. “We have made a road west of the Kali river. Nepal has accepted its territory is to the east of Kali river. There has never been an issue about tri-junction,” he said. Nepal is protesting that Lipulekh pass is not with India.

On a related question whether he saw a link between Lipulekh and recent clashes between Indian and Chinese troops in Ladakh and Sikkim, General Naravane, in a veiled reference to China, said: “Nepal may have raised the issue at someone else’s behest.” He, however, saw no connection between face-offs and any other events. On impending budgetary cuts, he said: “No cuts will be imposed at the cost operational efficiency or readiness…. there will be budgetary constraints, how much we cannot say.”


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