Citing his “destiny” for his sudden recall by the incumbent government led by Nepalese Prime Minister K P Sharma Oli, ambassador Deep K Upadhyay Tuesday said that Nepal should not blame India for its problems, since blaming it is a sign of “weakness”.
Upadhyay, who received his orders from Kathmandu on Monday evening, had a quiet lunch with Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar Tuesday.
“Blaming others is one’s sign of weakness. It is Nepal’s own responsibility to improve its situation,” the envoy said on Tuesday, in an interaction with a select group of journalists.
Indian officials, he said, have expressed their “anxiety” with him on the recent turn of events in Nepal, as he indicated — for the first time — that the amendments to Nepal’s Constitution are not possible without the support of Nepali Congress. The Nepali Congress is in talks with Maoist leader Pushpa Kamal Dahal “Prachanda” to replace incumbent Prime Minister Oli. And Upadhyay was an active politician with Nepali Congress before he was named Nepal’s ambassador to India last year by former PM Sushil Kumar Koirala.
While there have been allegations against him for trying to topple the Oli government, he said that the Foreign Ministry’s communication did not cite any reason and said that he has been “relieved of his duties”. “I was a political appointee by the previous government. So, it’s the prerogative of the government to replace,” he said, adding that political appointees do not have a fixed tenure, unlike career diplomats.
On the charge, he said, “Does an envoy have so much power?” He described the recent events as “bad dreams”, and insisted that Nepal President Bidhya Devi Bhandari’s visit has been “suspended” and will shortly take place. “Don’t connect the President’s visit suspension with me being relieved of my duties. It is just a coincidence,” he said.
On the proposed amendments in the Nepalese Constitution, he said, “If we had made certain amendments, then there would not have been problems. This is something we have to learn.” He was referring to the delay in amendments and the consequent agitation leading to disruption of supplies. “The past incidents should be forgotten as bad dreams and both sides should work towards repairing and mending the ties,” he added.