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EPG agrees to review Nepal-India treaties

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KATHMANDU — The first meeting of the Eminent Persons Group (EPG) has agreed to review a scope of bilateral issues including the treaties and agreements since the 1950 Indo-Nepal Treaty of Peace and Friendship.

The EPG, comprising diplomats from both Nepal and India, has also chosen to hold its second meeting in New Delhi after three months and meet regularly every three months.

The meeting that kicked off in the capital on Monday concluded Tuesday.

Emerging out of the meeting, Nepali EPG Coordinator and former Minister of Foreign Affairs Bheikh Bahadur Thapa said, “All the bilateral issues and concerns raised between Nepal and India in different times entered the meeting. No issues have been left out”.

“After the formation the EPG, we have asked the Government of Nepal and all the ministries to provide us all the documents of bilateral treaties, agreements and arrangements with India. We have a huge pile of documents. Starting with the grand old treaty of 1950, we will go through all the agreements and arrangements,” said Thapa.

But he declined to note as what bilateral issues were raised in the meeting.

The EPG was formed to take stock the overall aspects of Nepal-India relations and to recommend for further improvement in the bilateral relations.

The EPG was mandated to study the bilateral treaties and agreements along with various sectors including trade and transportation, information technology and development and recommend for further improvements.

Likewise, Coordinator of the Eminent Persons Group, India, and former Chief Minister of Uttaranchal Province, India, Bhagat Singh Koshyari said that the Nepal-India relations was reviewed in the meeting. “The meeting of our Group will find out discontents between the two countries and will recommend both governments to resolve it.”

Koshyari said that India and people of India have always wanted to see a prosperous and happy Nepal. He said, “Our Group has some limitations. We have no right to cross it. We will carry out work in line with course of action given to the Group.”

The former Chief Minister responded by saying that India has always taken Nepal as a good neighbor and has always wanted political stability and progress in the country.

Responding to a query about India not welcoming the new constitution of Nepal, Coordinator Koshyari said that he is a politician but the issue was out of group’s jurisdiction.

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Nirmala Panta rape, murder case : Locals protest after wrong suspect paraded

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BHIMDUTTANAGAR — Locals who were protesting against the rape and murder of Nirmala Panta of Kanchanpur’s Bhimdatta Municipality, have enforced shutdown in Bhimduttanagar Bazaar on Tuesday, protesting police’s failure to reveal facts behind the murder of 13-year-old girl and parading wrong suspect on Monday.

The District Police Office, organising a press conference on Monday,had made public Dilip Singh Bista (41), of Baghphanta, Bhimdatta Municipality-19 as Nirmala’s murderer.

Locals have shut down the market area stating that police were not being able to make public the true murderer(s) as they are not convinced by the findings of police citing that Bista was mentally unsound, according to the District Police Office.

Transportation has also been halted.

Bista, a resident of Khanna Chauraha area in Bhimdutta Municipality-19, was apprehended near the scene of crime on Sunday, according to police.

Police making public the wrong suspect has infuriated the locals and fueled the protest.

The agitators including various civil society organisations and human rights defenders have been picketing the District Administration Office and staging rally on the street mounting pressure on the police to reveal the facts behind the heinous crime.

Meanwhile, it had been learnt that police have fired rounds of teargas shells to contain the agitated mob.

Nirmala was found murdered in a sugarcane field on July 27, a day after she had gone to her friend’s home to get a notebook.

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