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Monday Jun 29 2020

India hatching plans to oust me for releasing new map: Nepal PM

Nepalese Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli says plots are being hatched to topple him for releasing the country’s new map and getting it adopted through Parliament. Photo: Reuters

Nepalese Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli has alleged India was hatching plans to oust him from office after his government released a new map for the country which included key Indian territories.

Oli while addressing a function on Sunday said, “Plots are being hatched to topple me for releasing the country’s new map and getting it adopted through Parliament.”

He said that he was making these claims based on intellectual discourse and media reports from New Delhi, and the activities of the Indian embassy in Nepal. “Given the ongoing intellectual discussions, media reports from New Delhi, Embassy’s activities and meetings at different hotels in Kathmandu, it is not very difficult to understand how people are openly active to oust me. But they won’t succeed,” he stated.

This comes just a few weeks after Oli changed Nepal’s map to include the areas of Kalapani, Lipulekh and Limpiyadhura as part of its territory, which was followed by a constitutional amendment to adopt the new map in its national emblem on 13 June. The areas have been historically part of Nepal.

“If anyone thinks they can topple me, I would like to remind them that our national unity is not that weak … I am not for continuing as prime minister for long. But if I quit today, there won’t be anyone left to speak for the country … I have to continue as a prime minister not for myself but for the country’s sake and not for today but for tomorrow,” said Oli.

The ties between Nepal and India have been steadily deteriorating with the former accusing India of not paying heed to its request for foreign secretary-level talks over the border issue while the Modi government has maintained that it will talk when the pandemic subsides and that it will “not accept artificial enlargement” of Nepal’s territory.

Earlier this month, Oli had also accused New Delhi of encroaching on Nepali territory since 1962 by stationing its Army in the Kalapani region, and for creating an “artificial” Kali river to demarcate the border. Oli has been facing tremendous push back from his own Nepal Communist Party (NCP) as well as opposition Nepali Congress (NC) over his actions.

The change in Nepal’s map was unanimously supported by all political parties in the country. Oli has also been facing severe criticism sponsored by Indian agencies over the way in which his government has handled the COVID-19 crisis.

There have been charges of corruption against some of his ministers over the procurement of medical devices and other equipment from China.

Last month, amid the map row, Oli had accused India of spreading coronavirus, calling it the “Indian virus” and even took a jibe at the country’s national emblem, the Lion Capital and motto ‘Satyameva Jayate (truth alone prevails)’, by saying New Delhi is now following the motto “Simheva Jayate (lion, signifying strength, wins)”.

Originally published in The News