Indian authorities digging the trench along the Gauriphanta customs point. Photo: Republica
KANCHANPUR, Feb 4: The Indian Seema Suraksha Bal (SSB) has resumed the work of digging a trench in the no man's land near Dokebazar of Kanchanpur since Saturday despite being warned by the Nepali authorities not to do so.
On January 23, Indian authorities had started digging the trench and fixing concrete pillars on the no man's land. Later, the work was postponed following protests by locals on the Nepali side of the border. Earlier, an unofficial meeting between the Indian and Nepali authorities had agreed to postpone the work until the next meeting of high-level officials. Going against the agreement, the Indian side has started digging the trench and fencing the wall stating it is their right.
"We had agreed to postpone the work until the next meeting of officials of both the countries," said Shankar Bista, acting Chief District Officer (CDO) of Kanchanpur, adding," We were waiting for them to call a meeting but they went against the agreement and resumed the work of digging the trench."
Locals living in the border are worried that the 5 or 6 feet tall wall being built in the border may inundate various settlements in Nepal in the monsoon. "This wall will block the flow of water. Hence, it will lead to inundation in Nepal," said local Bikash Ghodasaini.
The locals have urged the government to take some efforts to prevent the Indian side from constructing the wall. "The government must do something to stop India from deliberately constructing a wall in the no man's land," said Prem Thapa of Dokebazar.
Meanwhile, Bista who is acting CDO of Kanchanpur, said that the home ministry has already been informed about the matter. In their defense, the Indian authorities have claimed that its an effort to conserve and protect the animals of Dudhuwa National Park of India.