India has upset Nepal with a new map that it released last week. A 35 sq km area is frowning the neighboring country that says the map is “absolutely not acceptable”. The whole situation dates back to the 19th century!
Kalapani territory which is a 35 sq km disputed area, had fallen inside India’s border in a new map that was released a week ago. The new Indian map has picked up some of the wrong notes with Nepal.
The disputed Kalapani territory was shown as a part of Uttrakhand, India, in the new map
As a result, Nepal did not spare a moment and issued a statement pointing out the change that is “absolutely not acceptable”
But India is of a different view. Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson, Raveesh Kumar quoted, “Our map accurately depicts the sovereign territory of India. The new map has in no manner revised our boundary with Nepal. The boundary delineation exercise with Nepal is ongoing under the existing mechanism.”
Kalapani and its importance for India and Nepal
The Kalapani territory is a disputed one and is claimed by both India and Nepal. Moreover, the area is enriched with river Mahakali (or river Kali) that flows through it.
While India accepts Kalapani as a part of Uttrakhand’s Pithoragarh, Nepal is of the view that it is Darchula district’s part. The bone of contention hails from the fact that the area is a tri-junction point. That is, three borders meet here (India, Nepal, and China). Added to this, the source of river Mahakali has fueled the dispute over the years.
Treaties and Mahakali
The river Mahakali has many tributaries and all of them merge in the disputed territory of Kalapani. Thanks to the position it enjoys, there are agreements that define its past. One of them dates back to 1816 in the form of the Treaty of Sugauli under British India.
But the politicising of the Kalapani territory issue began in 1996 with the Treaty of Mahakali that was signed between India and Nepal. In fact, the countries had even tried to resolve the dispute in the form of the Joint Technical Boundry Committee in 1981. But despite resolving a major part of the dispute, the committee could not reach a final settlement.
With this, the issue was moved to the foreign secretaries of the two countries who are yet to find a solution to the whole dispute.