Nepal, India to conclude boundary works in 5 yrsNepal and India have agreed to continue the remaining boundary field works with an aim to complete them in the next five years.
Nepal and India have agreed to continue the remaining boundary field works with an aim to complete them in the next five years.
The fourth meeting of Nepal-India Boundary Working Group (BWG) concluded on Wednesday in Dehradun of India decided to complete the remaining works in five years.
A meeting of Survey Officials’ Committee in Dehradun, India in December 2015 had agreed to complete the remaining works within four years—by 2019. But it will not include Susta and Kalapani—the most contentious border points.
Susta and Kalapani, covering 40 km land along the 1,751-km long Nepal-India border, which were excluded in the previous surveys are now under consideration at the top bureaucratic level.
India and Nepal had agreed to dispatch three separate teams to clear backlogs.
According to a press statement issued by the Embassy of Nepal in New Delhi, the two sides reviewed the progress made in the past three years in the boundary-related field works as per the mandate of the BWG that include construction, restoration and repair of boundary pillars, as well as works related to the clearance of no-man’s land and GPS observation of boundary pillars. The meeting also agreed to mobilise one additional joint field team in order to expedite the remaining works.
The meeting also decided to commence the works of the next field season from November 1.
The Nepali delegation in the meeting was led by Ganesh Prasad Bhatta, director general of the Department of Survey, while Maj Gen VP Srivastava, surveyor general of India, led the Indian delegation.
As per the agreement, each four teams from the respective teams will have four detachment teams that will conduct inspection along the border. The first team will keep record of pillars, the second will reconstruct missing or damaged pillars; the third will clear the no-man’s land, handle the cross-holding issues and conduct inventory, and the fourth will study GPS and coordinate the border pillars and boundary along with the maps prepared by the both sides.
The construction, restoration and repair of boundary pillars will be carried out on the basis of GPS, taking aid of 182 sheets of maps prepared by the both sides. With the new arrangements, Nepal and India will have over 6,000 border pillars.
During the visit of Indian External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj in July 2014, the two neighbours had agreed to form the Nepal-India Boundary Working Group (BWG) and directed it to commence work at the earliest as per the terms of reference to be agreed by first meeting of the BWG.
As per the data of the Department of Survey, Nepal and India have installed a total of 8,553 pillars along the border. Of them, 1,325 are missing and 1,956 are in damaged or semi-damaged state.
The next meeting of BWG will take place in Kathmandu next year.