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On the Indian Blockade of Nepal

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On the Surface

Nepal recently drafted its first constitution following the fall of the monarchy. Written in the constitution are provisions against Indian influence in Nepali politics; India has imposed an unofficial blockade on Nepal, the existence of which has been denied by the likes of PM Narendra Modi. As the transportation of essential goods (namely fuel) trickles insubstantially in, the blockade might spell disaster for Nepal just months after a devastating earthquake.

The Constitution and Terai

Nepal established a new constitution in September, and, officially, India’s unhappiness stems from the constitution’s lack of support among the Madhesi people of Nepal’s Terai region, which borders India (unofficially, Narendra Modi’s Hindu nationalist BJP party is none too happy that Nepal, a primarily Hindu country, has adopted a secular constitution). The Madhesi, who have close ties to India, claim that the new demarcation of state borders will alienate them from the rest of the country. More…

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