Nepal Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli on Monday asserted that Nepal is ready to mediate between India and China to resolve the border dispute between the two nations. In an exclusive interview on DNA with Zee News Editor in Chief Sudhir Chaudhary, the Nepal PM also conveyed his sentiments and his understanding of the ancient ties between the two neighbours as a historian, taking pride in the rich and variegated history of Nepal.
"We will talk on both sides, ask them to sit for the conversation as almost all of them are our peers. There might be a difference of one-and-a-half years. All of us have been in politics for a long time. Therefore, we are companions," stated Oli.
On the popular sentiments in India that after the India-China border dispute, Nepal took a neutral stand, Oli said, "We have nothing to do with the Galwan Valley episode between India and China. Both the nations are are my neighbours." "We have friends on both sides. Nepal can take initiative to remove the misunderstanding between our two friends. In the relationship, the greatest strength lies in friendship," Oli added.
"In the politics of nations, our policy is the 'Politics of Neutrality'. We would like to remain neutral between the two neighbours," he said. When asked if he can mediate or negotiate talks between Chinese President Xi Jinping and Prime Minister Narendra Modi to break the deadlock between the two Asian nations, Oli said: "Yes, of course".
Speaking on India and China, he said, "Both are our neighbours and the neighbour cannot be changed. In size, population and development, both the nations are ahead. It is a pleasure for us that if we are able to produce, then these are big markets. If we are unable to produce, then we will have to consume their products. What will happen if we do not. We want that which is our inequality, it is on this thing. There is inequality in trade, inequality in production, imbalance and this imbalance should be eradicated."
"There are two differences in political systems, economic and social systems and we are among such neighbours. We want to have a perfectly balanced relationship, it is not like playing one card with the other. We will not play as it will not benefit anyone. We will talk to you, play cards, play cards with another ane on the third day it will be known. Therefore, the way of playing and printing these cards should be left completely. We will not go in this style," added Oli.
The Nepal PM said, "We want a cordial relationship between our two neighbours, a problem-free relationship. If these two giant neighbours start fighting, then it will have a negative impact on us. Therefore, we want that now is the era of Asia, we should develop ourselves...Today's model of development is to do the work of development itself. To do it yourself, you need peace, you need friendship, tension-free environment should be a stress-free environment. So we want our neighbours to have a good relationship. Let there be an atmosphere of trust."
Referring to the 8th edition of the India map, Oli said: "it did not go well with Nepal, we also submitted our diplomatic note, but there was no positive response."
The Nepal PM recently raised some issues that have created confusion in the age-old relationship between the two South Asian nations. Oil, however, said the resolution of outstanding issues between India and Nepal would pave a way for better development and further cementation of the ties between the two sovereign nations, which should progress independently respecting each other.
PM Oli opened his heart and spoke on different subjects (in Hindi) to convey his sentiments. Asked about Indo-Nepal relation in terms of two brothers Rama and Laxman, the protagonists of Ramayana appears to have become bitter in the present era as the younger brother is seeking equal status. Oli responds diplomatically, "India is the elder brother, and we are the younger brother. In geography and in population, Nepal can be small but as a nation, we should always talk in terms of universal equality."
"In size or territory, we can be small or big, but as a nation, this feeling creates this feeling definitely creates problems, We want the two neighbouring countries, two friendly countries that live in a region should retain their relationship in that spirit," he said, adding " The colonial era is over, this era is of mutual respect."
He further said, "The talks must go on as this brings out the truth. When other parts of the continent were in a dark age, we had sages who discussed philosophy. We should take pride in that the origin of philosophy took place in this region. Although the origin of western philosophy goes back to Aristotle in 6th century BC, here we discussed philosophy in 1500 BC."
When asked that you now refused to consider India as the boss, PM Oli said "if India will try to understand tomorrow then it would not consider itself as the boss. There is no need to debate on it further." On the question of Prime Minister Narendra Modi being elder to him, as he is 70 years old, while PM Oli is 68 years old, the latter said, "Personally, he is older than us, but when two prime ministers sit, the two prime ministers will sit, not the big or small prime minister. Rather, the prime ministers of the two nations will sit."
Oli said, "There are many Prime Ministers and Presidents in the world who are very young. They were not even born when we came into politics. Even though they are young in age, they are President, whether they belong to a big nation or a small nation. As a President, he will have an equal relationship with every President, he will also have an equal relationship with the Prime Minister or the Head of the government."
"PM Modi has no objection to this, but there are many people who consider it bad as I have projected my equal stature to that of Modiji. I am talking about countries, not about individuals," he added.