Nepal tells India to shut down field office

Last Updated: Fri, Mar 01, 2013 13:10 hrs

Kathmandu, Mar 1 (IANS) Nepal has asked India to immediately close its field office opened in 2008 to assist flood victims in Biratnagar town in the eastern Terai region, a media report said Friday.

"We have asked the Indian government through diplomatic cables to shut down the field office, as it is no more relevant," Minister for Foreign Affairs Narayan Kaji Shrestha was quoted as saying by the Republica daily.

According to Xinhua, despite several requests by Nepal, India, reportedly, has not shown interest in closing the office, which facilitated vehicular movement following the aftermath of floods in the Koshi river.

In January 2011, Nepal's ministry of foreign affairs wrote a letter to the Indian embassy about the necessity to close the office.

"In spite of several directives from the Nepali side, it is surprising that the Indian side has been dilly-dallying to shut down the office," a foreign ministry official told the daily.

"Initially, the field office was based near the Koshi Barrage on the Nepal-India border, before it was relocated to Biratnagar. While transferring the office, India did not seek the consent of Nepal," the official said.

India and Nepal share a border of around 1,750 km, and as neighbours, share a special relationship of friendship and cooperation characterised by an open border and free movement of people.

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