Nepal Foreign Minister Pradeep Kumar Gyawali will visit India on January 14 to discuss a range of issues with officials here, including the new map that had triggered diplomatic tension between the two countries last year.

Gyawali is scheduled to hold a meeting of the bilateral joint commission with his counterpart during his visit. He will be the first senior-most political leader from Nepal to visit India after ties between the two countries derailed over a bitter border dispute.

“Our foreign minister will visit India on January 14 during which his discussion will be centred on the issue of the map that we have published with the inclusion of the three territories,” said caretaker Nepal Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli during an address to the National Assembly, or upper house.

India, Nepal ties soured last year

The ties between India and Nepal nosedived last year after Defence Minister Rajnath Singh inaugurated an 80-km-long strategically crucial road connecting the Lipulekh pass with Dharchula in Uttarakhand on May 8, 2020. Nepal objected to the inauguration of the road asserting that it passed through the territory belonging to it.

The tension between the two countries escalated after Nepal came out with the new map showing Lipulekh, Kalapani and Limpiyadhura as its territories, drawing a sharp reaction from India. In June last year, Nepal’s Parliament granted approval to the new political map of the country featuring areas which India maintains belong to it.

Nepal PM vows to reclaim 3 territories from India

Amid efforts to improve the relations between the two countries that came under strain last year, Oli on Sunday vowed to reclaim the territories of Lipulekh, Kalapani, and Limpiyadhura from India through diplomatic talks.

Oli’s comments came at a time Nepal’s bilateral relations with India seemed to be back on an even keel following the recent visits of Army Chief General MM Naravane and Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla to the country.