As Nepal adopts constitution, India concerned over border unrest

New Delhi/Kathmandu, Sep 20 (IANS) As Nepal on Sunday adopted a new constitution, India said it has always supported a federal, democratic, republican and inclusive constitution in the Himalayan nation, but voiced concern over the unrest in parts of the neighbouring country bordering India.

In a statement, India extended good wishes to the people of Nepal on the promulgation of the much-awaited constitution, and urged that Nepal should resolve through dialogue the issues on which differences remain.

The statement said Indian envoy Ranjit Rae spoke to Nepalese Prime Minister Sushil Koirala about India’s concerns regarding the unrest in the border areas.

“Throughout the process of constitution-making in Nepal, India has supported a federal, democratic, republican and inclusive constitution. We note the promulgation in Nepal today of a constitution.

“We are concerned that the situation in several parts of the country bordering India continues to be violent. Our ambassador in Kathmandu has spoken to the prime minister of Nepal in this regard.

“We urge that issues on which there are differences should be resolved through dialogue in an atmosphere free from violence and intimidation, and institutionalised in a manner that would enable broad-based ownership and acceptance.

“This would lay the foundation of harmony, progress and development in Nepal. We extend our best wishes to the people of Nepal,” the statement said.

In Nepal, President Ram Baran Yadav promulgated the constitution, endorsed by most members of the Constituent Assembly, at a function in the assembly building in Kathmandu. Nepalese people lit lamps in their homes to celebrate the occasion.

The occasion also saw violence, as one man was killed and many other people were injured in clashes between police and protestors, mainly comprising the Madhesi minority, in the south Nepal town of Birgunj.

Under the constitution, 14 districts in the southern plains would be joined with provinces dominated by hill dwellers.

The plains-based political parties boycotted voting on the new constitution as they fear they will be under-represented.

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