-Buddhi N Shrestha
Nepal-India Joint Technical Level Boundary Committee’s 30th meeting
was held in Kathmandu on September 24 and 25, 2007. In the joint meeting, progress of the border strip-mapping and its printing was reviewed. It was stated that strip-mapping work was completed except Susta Narsahi area and Kalapani-Limpiyadhura sector of Mahakali riverian segment. It is to mention that decision, during the talk of working group officials, was taken place to press print 19 strip-maps out of 82.
Here lies a question, what is the outcome of Susta and Kalapani area encroachment during the joint meeting? In answer, nothing is circulated to the media and general public on these disputed and encroachment area.
In fact, the north-western border of Nepal extends not only to Kalapani, but up to Limpiyadhura, as depicted on the historical maps. Limpiyadhura is located 17 Km west of Kalapani, where there is an Indian military camp. Some of these maps are Map of Gurhwal Kumaon prepared on 1st February 1827
Map of Nipal and the adjoining countries- 24 April 1856 etc.
According to these maps, Kalapani totally belongs to Nepal and Nepal’s territory is extends further west, up to Limpiyadhura. Because Limpiyadhura is the origination of the River Kali (Mahakali), as drawn on these maps. As the Treaty of Sugauli (4 March 1816 says: all the land, east of the River Kali belongs to Nepal.
According to the spirit of the treaty, there is no point to retard Nepal on the issue of Kalapani, It must be followed as the historical maps and the documents tell us.
So far as the Susta disputed area is concerned, it must be followed the original course of the River Narayani flown during the time of Sugauli Treaty- 1816. The original river course must be delineated and demarcated accordingly. This is the dispute of 24 km of the river course, as there are no Junge Pillars on either side of the river. When there is a big flood, the river usually changes its course cutting Nepalese frontier, shifting towards Nepalese territory. And the Indian farmers and interest vested people intends to regard the new river course as the border line between two countries. But it is just beyond the adopted principle.
There were flood hazards during the monsoon period of 1845, 1954, 1972, 1980 and 1989. And the River Narayani changed its course in each and every heavy flood, leaving the Nepalese land on the east of the river.
It is to be understood that Nepal and India have jointly adopted the ‘Fixed Boundary Principle’ (not the Fluid Boundary Principle) on the river courses. But India has ignored the fixed boundary principle for the case of the River Narayani. This is the main issue of Susta resulting 14, 000 hectares of encroached land.
Nepal must insist on the adopted principle and the issue must be resolved delineating the original river course of the time of Sugauli Treaty.
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