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Gangtok, May 29: The Nepal government has announced that Indian citizens will now have to possess a mandatory work permit to work in the country’s industries and its institutions. On Wednesday, Nepal’s Labour and Occupational Safety Department ordered the labour offices across the country to finalize the number of Indian citizens working throughout the different sectors of the nation. 

In the letter written by the Labour Department’s Industry Inspector Prashant Shah, announcing the above decision, it states, “While inspecting the institutions the number of Indian workers would be updated and if they don’t have a work permit then inform the institution to take the work permit is directed hereby.” Until this announcement, no such permit was required for the Indian citizens working in Nepal and vice versa.

This new announcement comes in light of the dispute taking place between these two countries because Nepal is objecting India from inaugurating a road through the Lipulekh Pass in the Uttarkhand, which Nepal has claimed as their territory. Following this incident, the Nepal government approved a new map showing supposed Indian regions such Kalapani, Limpiyadhyra and Lipulekh as Nepal’s part of Byas rural municipality in Nepal’s Sudurpaschim province. 

The constitutional amendment required to approve the new map of Nepal, though it had been pushed hard by Nepal’s Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli, has been put on hold due to the PM being unable to build consensus for this move among Nepal’s other political parties. Oli in a move to bring out nationalist feelings on Nepal also accused India of spreading the global pandemic that is the coronavirus, in Nepal, and his statement asserting that the virus traced to India was more ‘lethal’ than the ones traced to China, has also sparked some controversy. 

Soon after, the Indian Government cancelled the license to import palm oil to Nepal, since India does not produce its palm oil, while the Indian government has also cancelled licenses to import palm oil from Bangladesh. Nepal wrote a letter to the Indian government to allow its traders to export palm oil, as well as tea to the Indian market.

The Nepal Rastra Bank has also banned the circulation of Indian currency notes of Rs 200, Rs 500 and Rs 2,000 in the country. On this, the Indian government has not given a formal response. 

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