Mains Paper 2: IR | Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s interests
From UPSC perspective, the following things are important:
Prelims level: Not much
Mains level: Suggestions for improving the relationship between India and Nepal.
Recent visit of the Nepali PM(K.P. Sharma Oli)
- The visit signals an important recalibration of bilateral ties
- The visit gives hope that the rupture in ties over India’s reservations about Nepal’s new constitution is being repaired
Improvement in the Indo-Nepalese relationship
- Mr. Oli put aside the anti-India rhetoric of his election campaign, and came to India on his first post-election visit abroad seeking ‘friendship first, and friendship second and third’
- Indian PM also promised support on development projects that meet “Nepal’s priorities
- The reset is long overdue, and should be accompanied by a transformation in the tenor of the relationship
Some issues need to be addressed
- Nepsl has been too susceptible to conspiracy theories about Indian meddling,
- while India and its diplomats in the Nepal embassy have sometimes lent credence to the theories by adopting a patronising attitude
How to further improve the bilateral relationship?
- A first step to the reset would be the completion of the ongoing process of updating the 1950 Treaty of Peace and Friendship
- Nepal would acknowledge that its citizens have benefited from the ease of employment and residence in India that the treaty provides
What should be done?
- India must recognise that Nepal’s aspirational young population is also looking beyond the open Indian border for opportunities,
- and Mr. Oli’s desire to turn his “land-locked” country into a “land-linked” country with a merchant navy must be considered positively
- From now on deliverables, such as road and railway links, power projects and post-earthquake reconstruction commitments should determine the success of the partnership
(not just the announcement of new initiatives)