Jul 16 2013, 12:28pm CDT | by Luigi Lugmayr
Kathmandu, July 16 — India Tuesday denied media reports that it had proposed to set up immigration check points at Pashupatinagar and Lumbini in Nepal, terming it a "misleading representation" of what was discussed.
"These are misleading representations of discussions held during the home secretary level talks between India and Nepal held in Kathmandu on June 1, 2013," the Indian Embassy here said in a press statement.
"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," it said.
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, said the statement.
"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."
"Establishing immigration check point at Pashupatinagar is intended to facilitate movement of foreign tourists from Darjeeling to Ilam of east Nepal, and the one at Lumbini to facilitate those who wish to visit Lumbini after completing the Buddhist circuit in India," it said.
A section of Nepali media, citing the minutes of the home secretary-level talks, had stated that India proposed to establish immigration check points at Lumbini and Pashupatinagar.
Following the media reports, a writ was registered at Nepal's Supreme Court, and, on July 9 it gave a interim order to the government not to implement the decision and not allow India to set up such immigration check points.
Four major political parties - the United Communist Party of Nepal-Maoist, the Nepali Congress, the Communist Party of Nepal-United Marxist-Leninist and the Madeshi Morcha also asked the government not to implement the decision.
Nepal's home ministry had last week also sought to clarify the position and make clear that no such agreement was reached with Indian side but was ignored.
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