India's refused media reports

India denies the charges on setting up Immigration Check Points in Nepal

July 18, 2013, 5:45 p.m. Published in Magazine Issue: Vol: 07 No. -3 July 12- 2013 (Ashad 28, 2070)

Indian Embassy refuted the news reports that India is building immigration check points at Pashupatinagar and Lumbini.  "Our attention has been drawn to reports concerning the “proposal to set up immigration check points at Pashupatinagar and Lumbini” thereby “compromising Nepal’s national sovereignty”, said press statement issued by Indian Embassy.

Indian Embassy refuted the reports following Nepal's four major political parties asked interim government led by Khil Raj Regmi not to sing any agreements with any country which has long implications in the country's sovereignty and national integrity.

 "These are misleading representations of discussions held during the Home Secretary level talks between India and Nepal held in Kathmandu on 1st June, 2013.  The proposal to set up immigration check points on both sides of the border at Pashupatinagar and Lumbini was made in good faith and in the best interests of Nepal in order to facilitate foreign tourist traffic (of third country nationals) through these points. Establishing immigration check point at Pashupatinagar is intended to facilitate movement of foreign tourists from Darjeeling to Ilam, and the one at Lumbini to facilitate those who wish to visit Lumbini after completing the Buddhist circuit in India.  Presently, such tourist traffic is routed through Kakarbitta and Bhairawa, respectively, which have the requisite immigration check points. However these are circuitous routes which increase the traveling time and distance for foreign tourists, thereby discouraging their movement to Ilam and Lumbini.  As the absence of convenient crossing points for foreign tourists is an obstacle for tourism promotion efforts, tour operators had drawn attention to this at the Joint India-Nepal Tourism Mart that was organized by the Embassy of India at Lumbini in cooperation with Nepal Tourism Board on 14-15 January 2013," said the Embassy reports.

According to Indian Embassy, immigration check points are never established by any country in the territory of the other country, but adjacent to each other in their own territories.  There is no question whatsoever, therefore, of India establishing immigration points within Nepalese territory at Pashupatinagar and Lumbini.  The reality is that India and Nepal discussed setting up such immigration check points in their respective territories at these two points (Pashupatinagar and Lumbini), just as they already exist at other agreed points along the India-Nepal border.

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