On 31 July 1950, India and Nepal signed a treaty of peace and friendship in an effort to “strengthen and develop these ties and to perpetuate peace between the two countries”. Over seven decades later, clamour is now growing louder in Nepal to “revise” the pact to reflect “new changes and realities”.
The call for revision was once again raised during the India-Nepal Joint Commission Meeting held on 15 January.
This came nearly seven years after both sides agreed to “review, adjust and update” the Treaty of Peace and Friendship of 1950, during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s first visit to Nepal in 2014.
“They (PMs) welcomed the decision of the Joint Commission to direct the Foreign Secretaries of the two countries to meet and discuss specific proposal to revise the Treaty of Peace and Friendship of 1950, which the Government of Nepal agreed to provide at the earliest. Both sides agreed that the revised Treaty should better reflect the current realities and aim to further consolidate and expand the multifaceted and deep rooted relationships in a forward looking manner,” a Ministry of External Affairs statement said then.
Subsequently, an India-Nepal Eminent Persons’ Group (EPG) was created to look into this issue and other matters of bilateral importance. The EPG report, which was finalised in 2018, had prominently recommended revision of this treaty. But the report has not yet been officially adopted.