http://idrw.org/nepals-relations-with-china-not-at-indias-cost-thapa/ Nepal’s relations with China not at India’s cost: Thapa Published June 11, 2016 SOURCE: PTI Nepal’s relations with India are “incomparable” and its growing ties with China were not at the cost of India, Nepalese Deputy Prime Minister Kamal Thapa said today, seeking support of both its neighbours to tide over the “most difficult” period in its recent history. On a three-day visit here, Thapa said there was no threat to Prime Minister K P Sharma Oli’s government thoughMaoist leader Prachanda had set certain conditions to continue his party’s support to the coalition regime. Fielding questions on a range of issues at a media interaction, Thapa, also Nepal’s Foreign Minister, said his government was committed to resolve the contentious Madhesi issue and a high-level panel has been set up to suggest within three months the ways to resolve their demands. He also rubbished media reports that Oli accused India of destabilising his government, saying his comments were “misrepresented”. Thapa said Ambassador Deep Kumar Upadhyay was recalled as government found somebody more suitable who can further strengthen ties between the two neighbours. Thapa cited Nepal’s transition to democracy, the Maoist struggle, last year’s devastating earthquake and blockade of supplies from India due to Madhesi agitation as major crisis facing the country during the last two decades and said it wants now to embark on a path of economic growth and development. “Nepal’s relations with India are incomparable. If we try to expand our relations with China, that should not be seen at the cost of India. 50 years back, the Himalaya was seen as a barrier, now it is no more a barrier. “Railway is coming next to Nepal’s border, highways are coming around Tibet. Do not you think it will be wise for Nepal to take advantage of that situation. It is very simple. We want development. “Naturally we would like to take advantage from both our neighbours. But not at the cost of each other. Nepal does not have a policy of playing cards against each other,” he said. (Reopens DEL 38) The Nepalese Deputy PM said his government wants to further deepen ties with India and that the “mistrust” between the two countries was a thing of the past. “Forget the past, whatever had happened had happened. We are very happy to take the ties forward. The mistrust was thing of the past,” he said, adding there was a need for “maturity” in ties. Thapa said the economic blockade which had crippled supplies from India had caused “severe impact” on Nepal’s economy and socio political life, adding his country, for its own interest, cannot afford to have unfriendly relations with New Delhi. About the Constitution, he said it was framed following a rigorous process and that the devastating earthquake in April last year had forced the political parties to come to consensus and ratify it though there were serious differences among them about various provisions. He said it is a rights-based “dynamic” Constitution and it was framed without any discrimination against any gender, race and religion. “Unfortunately, there are some misconceptions and we are trying to remove them.” Calling Nepal’s Constitution one of the most forward looking, he said though the country had expected wholesome praise from India, but it was not so. “No Constitution is 100 per cent perfect and Nepal’s Constitution is also not 100 per cent perfect.” He said, after India, China is the only country in South Asia to frame its Constitution through Constituent Assembly. Thapa said Nepal will never allow its territory to be used against India’s interest. He said around 13 bilateral meetings are lined up between the two countries in June and July which “reflected that ties are back on track” between the two sides.