Friday, April 15, 2011

Nepal-India Open Border: Prospects, Problems and Challenges

The Nepal-India Peace and Friendship Treaty which was signed on July 31, 1950 agreed to grant, on a reciprocal basis, to the nationals of one country in the territory of the other the same privileges on matters of residence, ownership of property, participation in trade and commerce, movement and other privileges of a similar nature. It became a major turning point in the movement of Indians into Nepal and was further reinforced by the Nepal India open border. However, it did not materialise until the installation of democracy in February 1951, which replaced the oligarchic Rana regime within three and a half months of the signing of the Treaty. It is said that in response to the evolution of incidents in Kashmir, the Nizam State of Hyderabad and the Indian states and territories bordering China, Sardar Patel, as he assumed the portfolio of Home Minister, strongly pleaded and persuaded Prime Minister Nehru to impose some sort of control on Nepal and the result was the Treaty of 1950 and it is clearly reflected in his letter to Nehru . It is to be noted that the Rana Government assisted Indian Government by sending Nepalese troops, when India had to face problems in Hyderabad during independence and in Kashmir in 1948.

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