IOC resumes fuel supply to Nepal through Raxaul

Kathmandu, Feb 8 (IANS) The Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) on Monday resumed supply of fuel to Nepal from the Raxaul-Birgunj border point after a gap of more than five months thus easing the supply situation in the landlocked Himalayan nation.

At least three dozen bullet tankers crossed through the key Raxaul-Birgunj trading point on Monday as the Samuktya Loktantrik Madhesi Morcha — or the Madhesi Morcha, as it is commonly known — agitating for amendments in the newly-adopted constitution of Nepal, decided to call-off all protests.

The trading point accounts for over 70 percent of the total Nepal-India trade in different items, including petroleum products.

Parsa Chief District Officer Keshav Raj Ghimire said the IOC was loading fuel in as many as 35 tankers at its Raxaul depot for transportation to Nepal.

Customs Department Director General Shishir Kumar Dhungana said 19 transit routes with India were operational now, and spoke of the general movement of export and import commodities.

In the wake of the Madhesi Morcha-led agitation in Nepal, the IOC had been rerouting the supply of fuel products to other points on the Nepal-India border.

However, after demonstrations on the transit route eased from Friday, the Nepal Oil Corporation (NOC) appealed to IOC to resume fuel supply from Raxaul.

NOC spokesperson Mukunda Ghimire said IOC will supply fuel in accordance with the arrangements in place prior to the blockade.

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