Nepal rejects reports on govt mulling Indian envoy’s expulsion

KATHMANDUI: Nepal has dismissed rumours that the government was mulling expulsion of Indian envoy Ranjit Rae as “baseless” and aimed at damaging bilateral ties.
Media speculation was rife that the Nepalese government was mulling Rae’s expulsion in the backdrop of cancellation of President Bidhya Devi Bhandari’s maiden foreign visit to India and the controversy surrounding the recall of Nepal’s envoy to India Deep Kumar Upadhyay by the Nepalese government.
Media reports had suggested that the government was preparing to declare Rae persona non-grata (PNG), meaning his diplomatic immunity would be withdrawn.
However, the Nepalese government rubbished such rumours with Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Kamal Thapa terming them as “baseless”.
“Some media speculation regarding Nepal govt mulling expulsion of Indian Ambassador Rae is baseless and aimed at damaging Nepal-India relations,” Thapa tweeted.
Nepal’s Ambassador to India Upadhyay has continued to stay put in his post in New Delhi, two days after his country’s govern-ment was said to have ordered his recall, and was reported to have denied he had colluded with India to topple the K P Oli dispensation back home.
Nepal had on Friday cancelled the visit of its President to India hardly 72 hours before her departure for Delhi. Though no reason was assigned for cancellation of the trip, it was believed to indicate Nepal’s unhappiness with India over the latter’s alleged meddling in the internal affairs of the Himalayan nation.