Nepal’s new constitution was promulgated on Sunday despite fierce opposition from minority groups in the southern plains whose homeland provinces will be split up under the charter. Nepal’s government had said an imperfect document is better than nothing, and it can be amended to reflect the aspirations of dissenting groups.
Politicians had squabbled for seven years over the charter, but were finally galvanised to finish it by two earthquakes that killed more than 9,000 people in Nepal this year. It creates seven states in a federal system, but is opposed by groups who want to re-establish Nepal as a Hindu nation, and others who feel it is unfavourable to people in the plains.
Concerned over the violence in the Terai region, India had called its envoy to Nepal, Ranjit Rae, to New Delhi for consultations on Monday where he briefed the government on the latest situation in the neighbouring country after it adopted its new fully secular and democratic Constitution.
Before leaving for India, Rae had spoken to Nepal’s prime minister to convey New Delhi’s concerns over the violent situation in several parts of the country bordering India.
The Ministry of External Affairs had also issued a statement saying, “We are deeply concerned over the incidents of violence resulting in death and injury in regions of Nepal bordering India”.
“We had repeatedly cautioned the political leadership of Nepal to take urgent steps to defuse the tension in these regions. This, if done in a timely manner, could have avoided these serious developments,” it said expressed hope that initiatives will be taken by Nepal’s leadership to effectively and credibly address the causes underlying the present state of confrontation.
However, on Tuesday, India faced backlash on social media with #BackOffIndia started trending.