KATHMANDU: Nepali traders, from now onwards, will be able to drive Nepal-bound imported automobiles over Indian roads as the Indian government has approved the letter of exchange (LoE), which is one of the components of the amended Treaty of Transit. Prior to this arrangement, such vehicles were allowed to be transported under the Treaty only by railway wagons and trucks or trailers after receiving proper seals from the Indian Customs. The movement of vehicles on their own power to Nepal has been allowed through Raxaul-Birgunj, Jogbani-Biratnagar, Sunauli-Bhairahawa and Nepalgunj Road-Nepalgunj border points. Nepal government had requested India to allow movement of vehicles on their own power citing the requirements of additional handling facilities, special carriers and equipment, which added to the cost and time of clearance of vehicles from Kolkata Port. The request had been made during the third meeting of Nepal-India Joint Commission held here on July 25 and 26, last year. Nepali auto importers were persistently pushing the government to request the Indian government so that they could bring Nepal-bound vehicles on their own power rather than bring it via rail. As per Shekhar Golchha, president of Nepal Automobile Dealers’ Association, the decision will help traders save the time and reduce the cost of importing automobiles. Earlier, they had to wait at least two to three weeks in the Kolkata Port to fill up the container and this provision will reportedly bring down the cost of four-wheelers by at least Rs 100,000.