Trucks laden with supplies head to Nepal

Kathmandu, Oct 4 (IANS) Hundreds of trucks laden with essential commodities on Sunday headed to Nepal after India lifted an 11-day unofficial restriction on Nepal-bound cargo trucks and freights.

India on Saturday evening informed Nepali officials in New Delhi and Kathmandu that it is positive that Nepal-bound cargo, trucks and petroleum bullets should be allowed as the security situation on Nepali side was now normal.

Over 70 freight trucks and 10 petrol tankers entered Nepal on Sunday morning, officials said.

These containers loaded with gas, electrical appliances and other essential goods entered the Himalayan country after they were cleared by the customs office. More containers are awaiting clearance, said customs chief Bhim Adhikari.

The Indian side pointed out that Madhesi-based political parties and the government team are close to a brokering peace. The Madhesi people in Nepal – mostly of Indian descent – have been agitating over the newly-unveiled Constitution.

Two amendments will be made to the newly promulgated Constitution of Nepal to address the grievances of the Madhesi-based political parties. This rift created tension along the border of India and Nepal.

But on Saturday, India’s external affairs ministry instructed its agencies to lift the unofficial blockade against Nepal.

A statement issued by the Prime Minister’s Office said that, at a meeting with Nepal Prime Minister Sushil Koirala, Indian Ambassador Ranjit Rae said some of the entry points to Nepal witnessed flow of vehicles from the Indian side since Saturday.

He said the remaining entry points will resume normal functioning from Sunday and Monday.

“As the transportation has been disrupted for the past few days, it will take some time before flow of supplies to Nepal return to normal,” Nepal’s Ambassador to India Deep Kumar Upadhyay told the Kathmandu Post.

Over the past week, Upadhyay and Nepal Minister for Commerce and Supplies Sunil Bahadur Thapa have met Indian Minister of External Affairs Sushma Swaraj and Home Minister Rajnath Singh, among others, to persuade New Delhi to lift the blockade.

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