Nepal Protests Against Shah’s Purported Statement on ‘BJP Expansion’ to Nepal, Sri Lanka

BJP Tripura Spokesperson has defended the statement but criticized its media portrayal, while many activists see this as part of the "Akhand Bharat" Imperialist Plan.

The Nepal Government has formally protested against the statements made by the Tripura CM Biplab Deb. The Tripura CM, during a party program in Rabindra Satabarshiki Bhavan on Saturday, had claimed that the Indian Home Minister and former BJP President Amit Shah had told in a party gathering about the party’s plans to expand in the neighboring countries of Nepal, Sri Lanka in the future.

Nepal Foreign Minister Pradeep Gyawali has tweeted that the statement has been noted and that a formal objection has been conveyed. According to Kathmandu Post, Nepali Ambassador to India Nilamber Acharya telephoned Arindam Bagchi, Joint Secretary in-charge of Nepal and Bhutan at India’s Ministry of External Affairs, to express displeasure at the statement and seek clarification.

“We were talking in the state guest house when Ajay Jamwal (North-East Zonal Secretary of BJP) said that BJP has formed its government in several states of India, in reply Shah said, Now Sri Lanka and Nepal is left. We have to expand the party in Sri Lanka, Nepal, and win there to form a government,” said Deb, East Mojo had reported.

Commenting on the issue, BJP Tripura Spokesperson Nabendu Bhattacharya has said that the comment has been taken out of context, but then has said “We think the Indian culture is synonymous with the Hindu culture and with the expansion of our culture in different parts of the world, peace can be established. So, we are trying to spread our ideology in different countries”.

Opposition Parties Respond

Many activists and politicians have criticized the statement purported to Amit Shah, and have said that this shows the larger plan of the RSS and Sangh Parivar of making an imperialist “Akhand Bharat Hindu Rashtra”.

The CPIM leader and former MP from Tripura, Jitendra Chaudhury have said the chief minister does not have a sense of the Constitution and democracy.

He said, “The CM has given a statement that Amit Shah, while he was the president of their party told them that BJP is on a mission to set up their government in Nepal, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. This means they are interfering in the affairs of the foreign country.” He added “Amit Shah, the present Home Minister, is engaged in a state conspiracy against Nepal. Shah has stated the same, and the evidence is given by a person holding the constitutional post in our state of Tripura.”

State Congress Vice-President Tapas Dey said India did not believe in Imperialism and has fought it for several years. “It is unfortunate that the Chief Minister of Tripura is supportive of imperialism. Both Sri Lanka and Nepal are sovereign countries, and we cannot interfere or do anything about their internal affairs,” Dey said.

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