By Our Reporter
It is disappointing that while travelling from Kathmandu to Rasuwagari, one has to go through security checks in 13 check-posts. One or two security check is okay but security checks at 13 places have given a wrong message that the security organs are discouraging Nepal’s trade with China. Also, those Chinese tourists travelling via road from Rasuwagari to Nepal are harassed from the security mechanism introduced by our security organs. The Nepal Police, Armed Police, Nepal Army, revenue department, customs are operating separate security check points. Why not they work together and reduce the security check-points, it is surprising. Whether they are really guided by some elements in discouraging Nepal’s trade with China, this is formidable question?
Before the formation of the People’s Republic of China, Nepal had trade relations with China. Even at the time when there were no roads, Nepali merchants were doing trade by travelling to Lhasa on foot. Some of the traders had even married the Chinese citizens and today also we can find a small community of the Nepali citizens residing in Lhasa. Sighatse was the transit point for the Nepali merchants. In fact, “Sighatse” means the place of ten houses in Newari language. Perhaps, during that time, there were only ten houses and the Newar merchants named this place Sighatse.
Again after the construction of the Kodari Highway and also construction of good roads on the Chinese side, the trade volume increased in a tremendous manner. So far, immediately after the devastating earthquake, the Khasha trade point has remained closed. According to reports, during the rescue works, the Chinese security had recovered documents related to Tibetan separatist groups in the Tatopani areas. This is the main reason for the shut-down of the Khasha trade point, according to noted journalist Kishor Shrestha, chairman, Nepal-China Journalists’ Forum. Even after frequent efforts from the Nepali side, this trade route has not been resumed. China is very sensitive on the activities of those separatist groups. If Nepal will continue to neglect the Chinese security sensitiveness, the Nepali dream for flourishing Nepal-China trade will not become true. The Nepal government as well as the traders and the local people residing nearby the Nepal-China borders should respect the Chinese concern and perform their role to end the anti-Chinese activities taking place in the Nepali soil.
Presently, China has focused on developing Rasuwagari as the new trade point for Nepal. By 2020, China is going to complete the railway link upto Nepal-China border point in Kerung. If Nepal wants to benefit with the trade facility via Rasuwagari, the Nepal government should not allow any activities of anti-China elements in the area and also in any part of the country. The Nepali leaders have always expressed their commitment on the “one China” policy and this policy should be respected by all the government organs as well as by the Nepali people.