The BRO project in Uttarakhand will now allow pilgrims to travel to Lipulekh Pass by road | ANI | Twitter
The BRO project in Uttarakhand will now allow pilgrims to travel to Lipulekh Pass by road | Representational Image | ANI | Twitter
Text Size:

Kathmandu: Nepal on Saturday raised objection over India inaugurating a strategically crucial link road connecting the Lipulekh pass at a height of 17,000 feet along the border with China in Uttarakhand with Dharchula, saying this “unilateral act” runs against the understanding reached between the two countries on resolving the border issues.

Nepal’s Foreign Affairs Ministry in a statement said the government “has learnt with regret” about the inauguration of the link road connecting to Lipulekh pass, which Nepal claims to be part of its territory.

The 80-Km new road inaugurated by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Friday is expected to help pilgrims visiting Kailash-Mansarovar in Tibet in China as it is around 90 kms from the Lipulekh pass.

After inaugurating the road through video-conferencing, Singh said pilgrims going to Kailash-Mansarovar will now be able to complete their journey in one week instead of up to three weeks. The road originates at Ghatiabagarh and ends at Lipulekh pass, the gateway to Kailash-Mansarovar.

The Kailash-Mansarovar yatra involves trekking at high altitudes of up to 19,500 feet, under inhospitable conditions, including extreme weather and rugged terrain.

Raising objection on the construction of the link road, Nepal’s Foreign Ministry said, “This unilateral act runs against the understanding reached between the two countries including at the level of the Prime Ministers that a solution to boundary issues would be sought through negotiation.”

Also read: New road for Kailash Mansarovar pilgrims is ready, will cut travel time by three days

We are deeply grateful to our readers & viewers for their time, trust and subscriptions.

Quality journalism is expensive and needs readers to pay for it. Your support will define our work and ThePrint’s future.


Lipulekh pass is a far western point near Kalapani, a disputed border area between Nepal and India. Both India and Nepal claim Kalapani as an integral part of their territory – India as part of Uttarakhand’s Pithoragarh district and Nepal as part of Darchula district.

“The Government of Nepal has consistently maintained that as per the Sugauli Treaty (1816), all the territories east of Kali (Mahakali) River, including Limpiyadhura, Kalapani and Lipulekh, belong to Nepal,” the ministry said.

“This was reiterated by the Government of Nepal several times in the past and most recently through a diplomatic note addressed to the Government of India on November 20, 2019 in response to the new political map issued by the latter,” it said.

It said that Nepal had expressed its disagreement in 2015 also through separate diplomatic notes addressed to the governments of both India and China when the two sides agreed to include Lipulekh pass as a bilateral trade route without Nepal’s consent in the Joint Statement issued on May 5, 2015 during the official visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to China.

“With this in mind, the Government of Nepal has proposed twice the dates for holding a meeting of the Foreign Secretaries of the two countries, as mandated by their leaders, for which the response from the Indian side is still awaited,” it said.

“The Government of Nepal remains committed to seeking diplomatic solutions to boundary issues on the basis of the historical treaty, documents, facts and maps in keeping with the spirit of close and friendly ties between the two countries,” the ministry said.

The ministry has also noted that the reports prepared by Nepal – India Eminent Persons Group (EPG) formed with a mandate to recommend measures and institutional framework with a view to elevating the existing relations, if implemented, will pave way to address outstanding issues left by the history.

Meanwhile, Nepal Police on Saturday detained dozens of youths and students as they held a demonstration near the Indian Embassy here to protest the inauguration of the link road.

The protesters, including student activists of the All Nepal National Free Students Union (ANNFSU) affiliated to the ruling Nepal Communist Party and youth leaders urged the government to take steps to stop India from using the road.

The construction of the road began in 2008 and was scheduled to be completed in 2013, but it got delayed due to the tough terrain in the portion between Nazang to Bundi village.

Subscribe to our channels on YouTube & Telegram

News media is in a crisis & only you can fix it

You are reading this because you value good, intelligent and objective journalism. We thank you for your time and your trust.

You also know that the news media is facing an unprecedented crisis. It is likely that you are also hearing of the brutal layoffs and pay-cuts hitting the industry. There are many reasons why the media’s economics is broken. But a big one is that good people are not yet paying enough for good journalism.

We have a newsroom filled with talented young reporters. We also have the country’s most robust editing and fact-checking team, finest news photographers and video professionals. We are building India’s most ambitious and energetic news platform. And we aren’t even three yet.

At ThePrint, we invest in quality journalists. We pay them fairly and on time even in this difficult period. As you may have noticed, we do not flinch from spending whatever it takes to make sure our reporters reach where the story is. Our stellar coronavirus coverage is a good example. You can check some of it here.

This comes with a sizable cost. For us to continue bringing quality journalism, we need readers like you to pay for it. Because the advertising market is broken too.

If you think we deserve your support, do join us in this endeavour to strengthen fair, free, courageous, and questioning journalism, please click on the link below. Your support will define our journalism, and ThePrint’s future. It will take just a few seconds of your time.

Support Our Journalism

2 Comments Share Your Views


  1. India clearly voilated international boundary principal by constructing road on disputed territory without Nepal consent and approval Indian expansionism murdabaad


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here