Kathmandu, Jan 5 : As always, india has again to clarify about a statement recently given by its army chief.
Ahead of Indian Army chief Deepak Kapoor’s first official visit to Nepal, the Manmohan Singh government distanced itself from the controversy raked up by the general with a reported statement about the Maoist army in Nepal, saying it did not reflect the government’s position.
“We have seen media reports attributing certain remarks to the Indian Chief of Army Staff General Deepak Kapoor on the issue of the integration of the (Maoist) People’s Liberation Army in the Nepal Army which are highly distorted and do not reflect the government of India’s position on the issue,” the Indian Embassy in Kathmandu said Monday in a press statement.
Without naming the Maoists, who have condemned the Indian general’s reported statement as “naked intervention in Nepal’s internal matter”, the statement said it was regrettable that certain political parties were deliberately “exploiting these distortions to generate a controversy involving India”.
“In keeping with our overall friendly bilateral relations, India and Nepal share close military and defence ties with long-standing institutional linkages between the armies of the two countries,” the statement added.
The distancing came after the Indian general was reported as saying last month that the PLA should not be merged with the Nepal Army as it would lead to the politicisation of the state army.
The peace agreement signed four years ago between the Maoists and the major parties that ended the decade-old Maoist insurgency agrees on the merger.
Since then, the Maoists have sought to know the official position of the Nepal government and the Indian government.
However, there were no official statements from Gen Kapoor or the Indian authorities about what the general had really said.
Gen Kapoor will arrive in Nepal on Jan 19 to receive the honorary title of general of the Nepal Army.
During the four-day formal visit at the invitation of his Nepali counterpart, Gen Chhatraman Singh Gurung, he will be conferred the honorary title at an investiture ceremony to be presided over by the President, Dr Ram Baran Yadav, on Jan 21.
By Sudeshna Sarkar Via online Resources.