By Tenzin Sangmo
Limi Valley, the northernmost corner of Humla and across the river is Sher, the nearest Tibetan village on the Nepali border. PC - himalayajournal.org
DHARAMSHALA, June 6: Chinese authorities in the Tibetan border town have sent back 470 Nepali locals of Humla district in the last two weeks raising concerns about the livelihood of the border community, reports The Kathmandu Post.
Most of the Humla residents visit Taklakot Town in Tibet, 30 kilometres from Hilsa, a town on the northwestern corner of Nepal for work and business purposes, many working as labourers.
The Chinese authorities posted on Nepal-Tibet border reportedly confiscated passes issued to Nepalis to cross the border, citing the murder of a Chinese woman by a Nepali on the Chinese side three weeks ago.
Mahesh Kumar Pokhrel, assistant chief district officer at the District Administration Office confirmed that the Nepali side came to know about the incident only in the third week of May.
“The Chinese side communicated to our district police about the killing. They are investigating the case.”
A government official posted in Humla told the Kathmandu Post
on condition of anonymity that the 2,500 locals who had already obtained one-year passes to enter Tibet had to suffer because of the Chinese decision.
According to Pokhrel, representatives of all six local bodies of the district met and decided to request the federal government in Kathmandu to take up the matter with the Chinese side through diplomatic channels, as cross-border movement is associated with the daily livelihood of the local residents.
A Chinese embassy spokesperson in Kathmandu told the Post that they are checking the fact with authorities concerned in China.
The locals are allowed to cross into Tibet as per the “Trade and Payments Agreement” signed between Nepal and China in 1974 which states that the border inhabitants of the two countries may engage in trade within an area of 30 kilometres from the border.