The face of Nepal's northwest district Mustang, a popular tourist destination bordering Tibet, has been undergoing transformation as India and China compete with each other to provide development assistance for the remote hilly region.
After India provided assistance to build and renovate schools, roads, monastery, bridges and water taps, China is paying special attention for the development of the mountain district.
China recently announced Rs.1 crore financial assistance to construct a library, science laboratory, school building with computers for Chhoser village adjoining Jhongwasen district of Tibet, said state-run Gorkhapatra daily.
India has already spent more than Rs 10 crore for the development and construction works in the district. A community building, 'Nepal–India friendship library' and a monastery were recently built in the district under assistance from New Delhi.
India has pledged to provide further Rs.7 crore for the construction of a bridge, a public rest house and a monastery in the coming year, according to the daily.
China has also asked the government to allocate part of its new aid package for development in the hilly region bordering Tibet.
During a recent visit to Mustang, Chinese ambassador Qu Gohuang pledged that his country will continue to provide assistance for the development of the remote area.
Indian Ambassador Rakesh Sood, who was in the district recently to inaugurate buildings constructed under assistance, from New Delhi, said his government is interested in providing additional assistance for the development of the district, Mani Kumar Gyawali, the Local Development Officer of the district, was quoted as saying by the daily.
Besides India and China, western countries including USA and Denmark have also shown interest in boosting economic and infrastructure development in the mountain district.