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Nepal: Army Chief Thapa to visit China


Nepal: Army Chief Thapa to visit ChinaKathmandu: Nepal Army Chief Purna Chandra Thapa is all prepared for a fresh pleasure week long trip to China beginning Sunday June 16, 2019.
It must have been a pleasure trip in that Nepal is not allowed to talk freely on military matters with a regime that is considered by the Indian command as its rival and thus a “number one” enemy as late George Fernandez had said of China while he was the India’s defense minister long time back.

And if it is the enemy of India then established logic demands that Nepal too should treat China as an enemy and the reason is that Nepal-India relations are so deep that Nepal Army Chief is the honorary chief of the Indian Army.

By the same token, Indian Army Chief is the honorary army chief of Nepal.
This has tentatively become a binding tradition for Nepal to endorse to the views that India acquires against China though in a very subtle manner so that China may not read the intention of friendly Nepal.
This is Nepal’s sovereign status on the ground which, let’s admit, is very close to a protectorate a la Baby Bhutan.
It is this relation which allowed Army Chief Dipak Kapoor to intervene into the affairs of the former Nepal Army Chief, Rukmangad Katwal a few years back.
It was just an internal affair of Nepal.

Katwal and Kapoor were class mates at some Military academy in India, we had been told.
As and when Nepal has gone against this conventional tradition forcefully set for Nepal by India, this country-Nepal- has been penalized and the people have had to bear the brunt of the Indian brutal whims.

The fresh being the economic blockade of the year 2015 September.
Even King Birendra was penalized in the early 1990s for having imported some basic weapons from China via the Arniko High Way.
In retaliation, an economic blockade was thus imposed on Nepal by then Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi which was “utilized in a grand manner” by some Nepali political parties to cut the wings of the active monarch-King Birendra.

It was taken as the great change of the 90s.
After the 1990 change, all the known and unknown political disasters befell upon this nation which continues even as of today.
To put it modestly, calamities of the Himalayan orders still prevail and “we the people” have no other option left than to accept the fate that has been slated for the Nepali population after the great political change of 2006 brought about by Shyam Saran from friendly India.

It was an India sponsored movement which allowed India to export the Nepal Maoists to Nepal who then were residing in New Delhi enjoying Indian government’s hospitality, as claimed authentically by senior analyst Bharat Dahal.

The Maoists upon entering Nepal captured in minutes the power structure of Nepal through the kind assistance of late Girija Prasad Koirala.
The treaty is a goiter in the neck of Nepal.
Furthermore, it is this treaty that tentatively bars Nepal from buying Arms and Weapons from friendly countries other than India which is neither a friend of Nepal nor it would be in our life time.
So Army Chief is just visiting China because he has been invited by the Chief of the People’s Liberation Army, Mr. Li Zuocheng.
Nepal Army Chief Mr. Thapa during his trip to Beijing is expected to meet the Defense minister Wei Fenghe.
It is a matter great surprise that Nepal Army has in the past conducted a couple of drills together with the Chinese People’s Liberation Army and the next drill is expected to be held in August in China itself which shall annoy India once again for sure.

Interestingly, the Nepal Army Chief Mr. Thapa is scheduled to embark on yet another trip to the United States of America which perhaps shall have something to do with Nepal’s active engagement with the brain child of the US-the Indo-Pacific Strategy.
The US hopes that Nepal shall play an active role for the Indo-Pacific Strategy.
So it is in this light, Army Chief Thapa’s visit to China assumes significance.
Upon completion of his US visit, let’s presume that our Army Chief makes a short trip to India, the undeclared boss of the Indo-Pacific strategy for this region, in order to “balance” Nepal’s army-to-army relations with some friendly countries such as India, China and the United States.

By the way, the Nepali population believe that the Institution of the Nepal Army is not that committed to preserve the sanctity of mother Nepal as when Indian side gulps Nepali landmass, the Nepali army appears less interested in preserving the soil being grabbed by the India-the friend across the border.
Nepal Army’s continued negligence encourages, the people believe, the Indian forces to pounce upon Nepali lands along the border in the South.
However, Nepal Army claims that it is committed to serve the nation. But the question is why then “our” Nepal Army listens to the news only that Nepali land have been grabbed and the pillars shifted towards the Nepali sides by the Indian military men or the Border Security forces?

Will the Nepal Army listen to this general grievances and help save mother Nepal as and when she is being squeezed by the friend across the border in the South and at times by the North also?
Will the Nepal Army listen to this modest appeal of the common nationalist population?
In the end, let’s hope that Thaps’s China visit benefits Nepal.

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