Lucknow: Tension continues to grip the Indo-Nepal border in the Bahraich district of Uttar Pradesh following a communal clash in Nepalganj town. Authorities from both India and Nepal have sealed the border after the outbreak of violence, leading to severe restrictions on both human and vehicular movement. Trade activities between India and Nepal along the border have come to a halt due to the prevailing violence and tension.
Provocative slogans during communal procession
Reports from Nepal indicate that 13 people were injured during the communal clash in Nepalganj district on Tuesday. The violence erupted when provocative slogans were shouted during a communal procession in Nepalganj last week. On Tuesday, members of the Hindu community were participating in a harmony march in Nepalganj, which was attacked by individuals from another sect. Subsequently, members from both communities engaged in destructive activities, setting shops and vehicles ablaze and attacking people. The Nepal police had to resort to opening fire and using tear gas to control the unruly mob.
In the aftermath of the violence, all movement across the Indo-Nepal border has been completely halted, and a curfew has been imposed in the border areas of Uttar Pradesh. The district administration of Behraich has issued an alert, and SSB Jawans have been deployed to patrol the areas under five police stations. According to Prashant Verma, the Superintendent of Police in Behraich, Uttar Pradesh, approximately one lakh people cross the Nepal border from each side, and 10,000 vehicles commute daily. Under the current circumstances, Indians have been denied entry into Nepal, with only Nepali citizens allowed to pass after providing proper identity proof.
It is worth noting that Rupaidiha in Bahraich and Nepalganj in the Banka District of Nepal are vital markets on the border where citizens from both countries conduct their purchases. The daily turnover of these markets amounts to around Rs 10 crore. Essential items such as food grains, fuel, medicines, and vegetables from the Indian side are transported to Nepal through this border. However, due to the communal tension in the border areas, hundreds of trucks loaded with goods have been stranded. Additionally, a significant number of Indian tourists, who usually catch flights to Kathmandu, Lukla, and Pokhara, have been affected by the situation, as flights operate from Nepalganj airport.