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Nepal Claims India Didn't Respond Kindly to Its Proposal of Talks ahead of Redrawing Political Map

Nepal Foreign Affairs Minister Pradeep Gyawali on Friday said Kathmandu had asked New Delhi several times to start diplomatic negotiations to resolve the simmering border dispute, but that India had failed to respond to it.

"We time and again asked India. We proposed possible dates as well. Our proposal was not responded to kindly," he said. "Amid the pandemic when the Indian government created the Lipulekh link road, it created serious disappointment among our people."

Nepal last month completed the process of redrawing its political map through a Constitutional amendment, incorporating strategically important Lipulekh, Kalapani and Limpiyadhura areas which India maintains belong to it.

India has termed as "untenable" the "artificial enlargement" of the territorial claims by Nepal. The India-Nepal bilateral ties came under strain after Defence Minister Rajnath Singh inaugurated the 80-km-long strategically crucial road connecting the Lipulekh pass with Dharchula in Uttarakhand on May 8.

Nepal reacted to the inauguration of the road claiming that it passed through Nepalese territory. India rejected the claim asserting that the road lies completely within its territory.

"When India published its eighth edition of political map back in November 2019, it comprised Nepal's territory of Kalapani, Lipulekh and Limpiyadhura. Definitely, Nepal opposed it through political statement and diplomatic notes," added Gyawali.

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