By N.P. Upadhaya
India is a flop case for Nepal to say the least. Other countries too may have the same impression that has Nepal as of now.
India, 1947, since its birth as a nation state through the mercy of the British India Company has considered the entire Indian sub-continent as its fiefdom and the smaller countries have felt suffocation as and when they have had to go the dictated way of the former British Colony, if the Indians recall their gloomy past.
Nepal and Baby Bhutan are the classic cases who have had the experience as to what India means to these tiny nations.
Inder Kumar Gujaral was the first ever Indian Prime Minister in the mid 1990s who once very beamingly announced that India henceforth shall demand no reciprocity while dealing with its neighbors. Poor Gujaral could not even conceive that his own British trained bureaucracy come in his way and thus came the sad and sudden demise of this mechanism called the Gujaral doctrine.
PM Gujaral thus was sidelined and is still in oblivion.
The South Block mandarins made it a point on how to cheat and deceit their own Prime Minister and PM Gujaral had to gulp this bitter pill. The trained bureaucrats preferred the continuation of the most hated and repulsive Nehruvian doctrine as this instrument was most handy for the notorious regime to keep under control the smaller neighbors, Nepal and baby Bhutan specially, fearing that if allowed these countries may shift their political allegiance towards China with which India faced a humiliating defeat in 1962. It is this debacle that still haunts India. Some fanatics in India make statements that the neighboring countries of India shall not be allowed to get lured by China-its arch rival.
Let them dream as dreaming is a free exercise in private.
The fresh DOKLAM standoff in between China and India wherein the latter managed a face saving formula too has a different story in that, despite of the otherwise statements emanating from New Delhi including Sushama Swaraj, China offered an olive branch to the other side, speaking in diplomatic verbiage, which provided some breathing space to the New Delhi establishment yet Beijing attached some riders wherein it was agreed in between the two that Delhi shall not impede the Chinese construction works in the area which enjoyed complete Chinese sovereignty. The construction works in the Doklam area is in progress as has been reported by the Chinese news agencies.
For India the DOKLAM incident was no less than the 1962 debacle. Baby Bhutan remained just askance as to why India was fighting a proxy war with China citing security arrangement reasons as per the Indo-Bhutan treaty?
India’s unfortunate neighbors in the recent months and years have found some solace to get themselves freed from the Indian clasp and have voluntarily sided with the new powerhouse that is China these days which has been challenging the United States of America in all possible sectors. And this in turn has been attracting even the US trusted allies who were more than willing to become a part of the several initiatives under taken by China in the recent years.
In doing so, China is thus wooing various India friendly nations near and far much to the discomfort of the Indian establishment. Some sort of panic is in Delhi as to how its friends were slipping out from its chain one by one?
India under PM Modi shall perhaps incur loss each day, a guess work only.
Yet Congress rule in India was no less troublesome for these frightened neighbors. It was PM Mr. Singh who encouraged FS Shyam Saran who did away with the Royal Institution and installed the Delhi residing Maoists to power through their own man in Nepal – GP Koirala. This is history and can’t be erased.
And look the same Shyam Saran says now that India’s reckless diplomacy was the main cause to have distanced Nepal to the extent that the latter has been thrown to the lap of the Chinese.
Delayed Repentance that it was:
How the BJP rule under PM Vajpayee duped Nepal is also a classic case which merit attention. The then Nepali PM Girija Prasad Koirala was informed by his Kathmandu sleuths that Comrade Prachanda and Dr. BR Bhattarai were hiding in NOIDA, a Delhi suburb, and creating havoc in Nepal enjoying Delhi government’s shelter associated with great care.
Later Koirala during a visit to India informed PM Vajpayee that the most wanted ones were residing in Delhi and were provided with special care by the BJP establishment, and then PM Vajpayee replied, (sic)” Is it that? I have not been informed by my authorities of such clandestine gesture provided in Delhi to your wanted men. I shall look into all these”.
Later things turned dramatic and it was PM Koirala who bagged the accolades in having brokered a peace agreement with the super heroes of the Maoists people’s war under the meticulously drafted 12 point agreement which later did away with the system of constitutional monarchy in Nepal. We are now a republican state living under the mercy of the leaders who have been told to rule Nepal mercilessly. Each and every leader in Nepal since the abolition of monarchy now makes it a point to pay respect to the New Delhi deities as and when they feel that they need Delhi blessings to remain in power or even to create some problems to those who beg to differ to remain under the grip of the Indian establishment. The pilgrimage to Delhi is in progress even as of now.
Deuba clinging to power and KPS Oli’s desire to get elevated to Singh Durbar corridor, even after the election results, too is a standard case wherein Delhi is playing dirty game openly. Obviously, Oli apparently has distanced himself from the New Delhi regime since the great quake and has sided with the Chinese regime with a fervent hope that China would come to the rescue of Nepal as and when New Delhi unilaterally imposes inhumane economic blockade on Nepal. The last experience was simply a horrible drama staged by Delhi to create panic in this country, to which this writer was himself a victim of the brutal Indian blockade. Unfortunately, Delhi was encouraged to do so through the kind courtesy of some Nepali leaders with visible attachment with the regime across the border. The fact is that mother Nepal has some children who prefer to love mother Delhi than what it should have been the otherwise.
Delhi used these fractured sons to the hilt.
It came as a matter of surprise to many in Nepal when we were given to understand that the next Nepal PM KPS Oli avoided to mingle in the Indian embassy republican day, January 26, reception but he preferred to remain out from the Valley. Oli was in Pokhra that day.
Thanks one Nepali national of his stature boycotted this ceremony wherein practically the entire gang of mother Nepal leaders beamingly attended the ceremony. Some even may have taken this event as their own republican day.
Prime Minister in waiting KPS Oli in doing so perhaps wanted to hint the declared hegemony that all was not well yet in Nepal-India relations despite PM Modi’s repeated congratulatory messages to the latter.
The message must have approached Delhi. But yet the things remain intact. The fact is that Oli was, and may be still, the best friend of India to the extent that Oli who is suffering from Kidney problem used invariably to visit Medanta Hospital, Delhi for a free checkup. The process continued for almost a decade or so.
Who knows Oli played a trick to portray himself as not an India man but instead a man preferred by Beijing. Is Beijing being duped? The question thus remains intact.
Oli definitely played a trick and cheated Nepali people in that the very next day, January 27, he beamingly attended a similar program organised by Indian embassy and consoled the Indians that he continued to be their “men” in Nepal and that the attachment he had for Beijing was just to please the Dragon and nothing more than that.
Beijing has now thus reasons to suspect the very political credentials of KPS Oli.
PM Modi during the mobile conversation with Oli also expressed his desire to visit Janakpur and Muktinath as a pilgrim. Oli said Okay.
The fresh hobnob with Modi bodes ill for Nepal which means that yet another blockade is around the corner for Nepal. Just wait how Modi dupes KPS Oli. This is what the experience collected over decades and decades summarily tell of Indian attitude towards Nepal whether it be BJP or the Congress rule in India. India’s inimical attitude towards Nepal shall grow even more.
Beijing has though reasons to smile but yet is thus advised not to take Oli as their near and dear political persona in Nepal unless he proves it at an opportune moment.
To boot, the hard fact, almost a guaranteed one, is that China has no reliable partner in Nepal yet though the search is in progress.
China lost its trusted and tested partner in Nepal long time back under the appeasement that came from India, if Beijing recalls the 2005-6 days.
Everything that has been happening in Nepal since the grand ouster of the Royal institution is taking place as per the grand design of New Delhi establishment. Dragon understands this fact but prefers silence. Beijing too got lured by Delhi and thus committed a blunder on Lipulek — the Nepali land mass. Nepali population has thus reasons to suspect the very inner intent of China because the blunder yet remains to be corrected with an apology by China honestly speaking.
Oli is a seasonal Beijing man. With the change in season, he is likely to change himself to what he used to be and for that he has housed a new found partner who can or has the political expertise to negotiate with Delhi.
He may change side any time when it suits him. However, the moment at present has been booked for Beijing and the luring process is in continuation. His new partners in the united party has the presence of such personalities who have created devastation in Nepal by being in Delhi for decades plus and that too enjoying friendly government’s hospitality. This must alarm Beijing if she is smart enough in subtle diplomacy. Diplomacy has several faces.
This is spring season, come summer, Oli may prefer to enjoy the hot sun of Delhi in the name of free treatment.
Oli may in all likelihood make his first visit to Delhi sending jolts to Beijing.
Beijing’s search for a reliable partner in Nepal should thus continue or else Kathmandu too will slip from Beijing’s hand. Beijing’s diplomatic silence is sure to push Nepal to the status of Baby Bhutan. The likelihood remains.
A soother for China: The entire population, save a few, wishes China’s grand entrance in Nepal like what Beijing has done in Pakistan.
China must help Nepal to develop some strong infrastructure, for example, building factories which generate employment opportunities for the fleeing Nepali youths to the Gulf countries.
For this China should take guaranteed commitments from Nepal that such factories would not be sold like the previous ones for at least seventy years.
Third, China’s Tibet should be linked with all possible Nepali landmass so that Nepal can challenge yet another blockade, if and when India prefers to impose on Nepal.
Building of Oil storage plants, both KPS Oil and Petro products in Humla, Kimathanka, and Rasuwagadhi to begin with.
Construction of power hubs, like in Pakistan and Bangladesh, at agreed places from where electricity distribution could be made possible to its entire population to avoid Indian dependency on power supply.
And last but not the least, correct the LIPULEK blunder committed together with India at the earliest so that Nepal can repose some trust on China once again.
Do not trust Nepali leaders who meet Indian RAW men during dark and yet exhibit themselves as Beijing’s men. This must be very hard to find but yet the search must continue.
And above all, Beijing’s mini diplomatic community here in Kathmandu should approach, if possible, Nepali scholars, and intellectuals with open mind set for exchange of views on how to expand and enhance Nepal-China ties for several decades and decades to come. That’s all.
Correct Lipulek blunder: China likely to be duped by next Nepal Prime Minister
By N.P. Upadhaya