Nepal set up its 15th border observation post (BOP) at Tatopani along the India-Nepal border on Tuesday, a day after it erected a BOP at Rupaligad in its Dadeldhura district. Opposite Purnagiri in Champawat district of Uttarakhand, this is the third BOP that has come up in three days.
India and Nepal share a 275-km-long border, which covers four districts of Nepal – Darchula, Baitadi, Dadeldhura and Kanchanpur — and three of Uttarakhand, at Pithoragarh, Champawat and Udham Singh Nagar.
Nepalese Armed Police Force (APF) DIG Harishankar Budhathoki inaugurated the latest BOP at Tatopani. “India and Nepal have an open border. This (the BOPs) will stop criminal activities like smuggling and illegal movement across the border,” he said.
On Sunday, Nepal had inaugurated a BOP in Datu in its Darchula district. The next day, another popped up in Rupaligad. A few days ago, as reported by TOI, Nepal’s minister for home affairs Ram Bahadur Thapa had laid the foundation stone of the battalion headquarters for Nepalese APF in Chhangru village, which borders Kalapani. Thapa is believed to have saidthat a multi-utility building will be constructed in the area for the APF at an estimated cost of Rs 10 crore within one year.
Tensions arose between the two countries after defence minister Rajnath Singh inaugurated the 80-km-long Ghatiabagarh-Lipulekh road in May. In the last four months, Nepal strengthened its military presence in Darchula district and set up BOPs at Dumling, Jauljibi, Lali, Jhulaghat and Pancheshwar areas along the border with Uttarakhand.