Nepal-India EPG meet under way

Kathmandu, April 12

The eighth meeting of the Eminent Persons Group on Nepal-India Relations kicked off in New Delhi today.

The meeting, which will take place till tomorrow, is holding consultations on finalising the report to be presented to both the governments.

“Talks are being held in a very harmonious environment, and the meeting is now focused on finalising the final report,” said a participant of the meeting.

The Eminent Persons Group on Nepal-India relations, whose two-year tenure ends in July this year, has been mandated to come up with a comprehensive report on anything that needs to be updated, adjusted or amended in all exiting bilateral treaties, agreements, understandings, including the Peace and Friendship Treaty of 1950.

At the end of the seventh meeting in Kathmandu, the Eminent Persons Group members had said they were giving final touches to the report to be presented to the governments of the two countries.

During Prime Minister KP Oli’s recent India visit, Oli and his Indian counterpart Narendra Modi had also said that the recommendations put forth by the EPG would be accepted.

“Prime Minister Oli’s India visit has definitely given a fresh impetus,” said the participant, adding, however, that it might not be the last meeting of the EPG and another meeting might be held to finalise everything.

The body has four members each from Nepal and India. Nepali EPG members include former foreign minister and ambassador Bhekh Bahadur Thapa, former chief commissioner of the Commission for the Investigation of Abuse of Authority Surya Nath Upadhyay, former law minister Nilamber Acharya and CPN-UML leader Rajan Bhattarai.

The Indian EPG members are senior Bharatiya Janata Party leader Bhagat Singh Koshyari, former vice-chancellor of Sikkim University Mahendra Lama, former Indian ambassador to Nepal Jayant Prasad and VIF senior fellow BC Upreti.