Current affairs

Enter The Dragon


I had never before heard of Trishuli river in Nepal. Apparently, it is a very popular river for white water rafting with foreign tourists visiting that country. The river has patches of extremely fast flowing water or rapids and I believe that it is a great fun to ride the river in rubber boats or rafts. Trishuli river flows in North-South direction, just to north of Kathmandu, the capital of Nepal, and later joins the Kali or Budhi Gandki river.


Like many rivers flowing into North India, Trishuli river also originates from Tibet. In Tibet, this river is called Gyirong or Kyirong River. It crosses into Nepal near a small hamlet called ‘Resuo’ There is a small check-post erected by Chinese military at the border on a small existing trading track along the river. One can enter into Nepal from Tibet by crossing a small steel wire suspension bridge. After entering Nepal, nearest road-head is at Syabrubesi village, at a distance of about seventeen kilometers from the border.


Historically, Tibet and Nepal have fought many wars. The trading track along narrow Trishuli river gorge, always had provided an easy access to Nepal for Tibetan invaders . This border outpost has been therefore always well protected. The ruins of an old fort called ‘Rasua Garhi’ still exist not very far from ‘Resuo’ Check-post. No one except Nepali citizens inhabiting in this area, are allowed to go near the border or cross it. Nearest town from this border in Tibet is also named after the river and is also called as Gyirong. The inhabitants of this area have been traditionally going to Gyirong town in Tibet for buying all their provisions.

The days of popularity of Trishuli river, as a well known white water rafting center, seem to be coming to an end. Construction of a highway between border check-post at ‘Resuo’ to Road-head at Syabrubesi village is fast nearing completion. As per agreement between Governments of Nepal and China, this 17 kilometer long stretch of highway in Nepal Territory, is being built by Chinese construction workers. The cost of this work is being borne by China. The terrain here is so jagged and inaccessible that major blasting and rock removing work is needed. One can see such blasting and excavating work going on this patch of road. It is expected that the Chinese would have to spend about US$ 20 million to complete just this 17 kilometer long patch of road.


In Tibet, this highway would extend up to Gyirong town. A major road artery has been already built between Lhasa and Gyirong. On the Nepalese side a road already exists between Syabrubesi and Kathmandu. It is clear that as soon as highway between Gyirong and Syabrubesi is ready, a direct motor-way would open between Lhasa and Kathmandu.


Expectations run high in this region as it is expected that the road would provide big boost to trade and tourism between Nepal and Tibet. Local people are expecting employment , work and easy access to vast range of consumer goods from China, better Chinese built schools on other side of border and in general, benefits from Chinese wealth.


However the real importance of this Gyirong-Syabrubesi highway is neither about Nepal connectivity nor Lhasa- Kathmandu connectivity. Lhasa is now connected to Xinghai province in China by an excellent Highway. Real beneficiary from this road is likely to be the China- India trade, which has already reached astronomical proportions.


There are obvious apprehensions about this road in India, as a motor-way that can carry heavy trucks loaded with traded goods can also carry soldiers and armoured vehicles if required. Chinese frontier is no longer at some far off place in Ladakh or Arunachal Pradesh. It has suddenly moved very near, just North of Delhi. For a millennium the Himalayan ranges have always provided a security and protection to people of India from invaders coming from central Asia or steppe. This protecting barrier seems have been now pierced by this latest Chinese action. India needs to take necessary and suitable counter steps to safeguard the country from any misadventures.


Chinese also seem to have worries and apprehensions about this road. There is a sizable Tibetan community in Nepal which basically consists of disgruntled people who have run away from Tibet because of their opposition to Chinese occupation of Tibet. These people, when provided with such an easy access to Tibet, are expected to create trouble for the Chinese regime.

The Chinese Dragon has now suddenly appeared on the door-steps of India. Whether it would bring trade and prosperity to the region or would create head aches and problems is yet to be seen.

31 January 2010

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About chandrashekhara

I am a retired electronics engineer. I am interested in writing, reading books. Other hobbies include Paper models, wooden fret work and social networking.

Discussion

3 thoughts on “Enter The Dragon

  1. Dear editor,
    We, Nepalese people are suffering from the notorioua behaviour of India. There is no alternative to parliamentary democracy in Nepal. But it does not mean that we follow Indian orders and perish Nepal’s identity. The definition of Nepal’s nationality is to maintain balanced bilateral diplomatic ties with both the countries, China and India, based on democracy and by protecting its pride.
    Cordial people to people level relations between Nepal and India has existed since ancient times. We have to keep friendly relations with India due to our similar cultural and religious traditions. But sadly Indian congress, ever since coming to power has been striving to destabilize Nepal. India, through its intelligence agency ‘RAW’, has been found continuously involved in destabilizing our national identities – royal institution, Hindu Kingdom and national language, which were developed along with the ideology of national unity, security and national identity.
    China should have liberal thought in order to enhance its trade and even to exhibit its existence in the region through its railways system. China should expand the railways to south Asian countries including Nepal and also to Europe. If so, China will teach a lesson to the so called imperialistic powers. And furthermore, it will give a strong message that China is friendly to the peace loving countries of the world. This great contribution of China will contribute in connecting South Asian countries, including Nepal, to Europe.

    In the name of the United Nations, America is fermenting a conspiracy to destroy China by advocating ‘Free Tibet’ and for which they are making Nepal a base area. In Nepal, with respect to the one China policy, the King had closed Dalai Lama’s office in Nepal. Being furious with Nepal, America took the path republic in Nepal. On the other hand, India with the consent of the US and the UN, helped in establishing the secular and so called federal republic of Nepal. China must not forget that the Nepalese monarch is the only guarantee for both China’s and Nepal’s security. The Nepalese monarchy had established itself as an institution fighting against imperialism. Therefore imperialistic powers have been making several conspiracies against the Nepalese monarchy.
    If a transit channel between Nepal and China exists, Nepal will largely benefit from this, for which, the railway being built in China must be used. The railway track which was built from Beijing to Lhasa has been operating since 2007. Now China must also mull over how it can benefit from the railway in terms of business expansion and identity here. China should extend its railway lines to Nepal and other South Asian nations, thus, and be able to counteract against the imperialist and colonialist nations, but at the same time establish friendly ties with peace loving nations like Nepal. The railway will also establish China as a bridge between the smaller nations of South Asia, including Nepal, and Europe. Nepal must also embark with internal and foreign support to build a highway from Taplejung to Darchula. Only then, Nepal will be able to recuperate its status as a beautiful, peaceful and great nation.
    The construction of railways can also help a country to liberate itself from foreign intervention. After the railway from Lhasa to Kathmandu via Khasa is built, a railway line from Lhasa to Kerung must also be constructed. Trailing by the bank of the Bhramhaputra River, the distance from Lhasa to Kerung is almost 1000 kilometers. The distance from Kerung to Nepal’s Rasuwa is 20/22 kilometers. Following the line from Lhasa to Kerung, the distance from Laajya of Tibet to Kimathanka of Sankhuwasabha is 100-150 kilometers. The distance to Khasa following the same line is 50-75 kilometer. The distance from Khasa to Kathmandu via Tatopani is 120/130 kilometers. If the railway line is built along the bank of Trishuli River, the distance from Kerung Rasuwagadi to Bharatpur Gaidakot via Dhading is 300 kilometers. After the railway is built in Kerung, Rasuwa, Khasa, Tatopani and to Kimantha from Lajya of China, the areas will be developed. It is imperative to form a high level railway building committee between Nepal and China with a new package for transit.
    If the railway line reaches Kerung, petroleum products can be brought from Kazakhstan and Russia, while gas can be purchased from Uzbekistan. Nepali products can be sold in the European nations and Russia.
    So, we want the cordial relation with China.
    THank you.
    Dirgha Raj Prasai
    Former Member of Parliament, Nepal.

    Posted by Dirgha Raj Prasai | February 1, 2010, 9:55 am

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Pingback: Enter The Dragon « SandPrints | Tibet Cares - January 31, 2010

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