China becomes first country to assist local polls in Nepal | world-news | Hindustan Times
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China becomes first country to assist local polls in Nepal

India, which has been pushing for all stakeholders to join the electoral process, is still silent on offering any kind of assistance despite several requests from the Nepalese side.

world Updated: Apr 17, 2017 21:48 IST
Anil Giri
Chinese President Xi Jinping (right) shakes hands with Nepalese Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal (left) at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing in March.
Chinese President Xi Jinping (right) shakes hands with Nepalese Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal (left) at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing in March.(AFP file)

As Nepal steps up efforts to hold polls to local government bodies on May 14 in the face of opposition from the Madhesi Morcha, China has become the first country to offer assistance for the elections.

India, which has been pushing for all stakeholders to join the electoral process, is still silent on offering any kind of assistance despite several requests from the Nepalese side.

Besides monetary support of nine million Yuan announced during Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal’s recent visit to China, a tranche of election-related materials arrived in Kathmandu from Beijing on Monday.

Chinese ambassador Yu Hong handed over election-related materials, including pens, stamp pads, rubber stamps, calculators, scales, punching machines and table watches, during a function in Kathmandu.

Nepal has also purchased 30,000 ballot boxes from China that are set to arrive in Kathmandu in a day or two, the Election Commission of Nepal said.

The Election Commission said it requires 67 types of election-related materials to conduct the polls. It identified India, China and the UNDP as major sources for these items.

“Nepal had requested for around 1,000 vehicles of various types from India but we are not sure whether we are getting them or not,” said a senior Nepal government official who did not want to be named.

According to officials, the election commission had requested India to provide vehicles and the special ink used to mark the fingers of voters after they cast their ballots. It had sought 11 cars, 35 double cabin pick-up vans, a mini bus, a micro bus, 30 motorcycles and seven scooters.

Officials of the election commission and the home ministry said there had been no confirmation from India on whether it would provide the assistance sought by Nepal.

During the second Constituent Assembly elections in 2013, India had provided 750 vehicles and other election-related materials.