‘Disgraceful how India is treating Nepal’

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Justice Markandey Katju

It is disgraceful how India is treating Nepal, a small, landlocked country, dependent heavily on imports from India. Our government has stupidly imposed an undeclared blockade for about two months on supplies of fuel and other goods to Nepal, causing great hardship to the Nepalese people.

Some Nepalese people have sent me messages on Facebook requesting me to post something on this critical situation.

The official Indian government stand is that the Madheshis are blockading… supplies to Nepal because of their alleged under-representation in the proposed Nepalese Parliament and India can do nothing about it.

However my own opinion is that the matter is directly connected with the ongoing Bihar elections, which is regarded as a life or death struggle by the BJP. Many Madheshis live in Bihar ( as well as in Nepal ), and so their votes are regarded crucial by the BJP.

The blockade can easily be ended within a few hours by taking strong action against the blockaders, but then what would happen to the Madheshi votes in Bihar?

So after the results of the Bihar elections are declared on 8 November, the Indian government will probably take action and end the blockade.

And how does it matter to the BJP if the people of Nepal suffered for two months ? All that matters to these politicians is getting votes by any means.

Justice Katju is a former Supreme Court Judge and ex-chairman of Press Council of India

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