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Nepalese migrants to seek dual citizenship

Staff Reporter

Migrant Nepalese Association (India) will soon draft a memorandum of demands

— Photo: K. Murali Kumar

Children giving a dance performance at a State-level conference of Migrant Nepalese Association (India) in Bangalore on Sunday.

Bangalore: The Migrant Nepalese Association (India) will draft a memorandum listing demands to be sent to both the Indian and the Nepalese Governments.

On the top of the demand list is representation in the Constitution Drafting Committee of Nepal so that the community is taken into consideration at the constitutional level, dual citizenship, of India and Nepal, for the members of the community, electoral rights in India so they can be part of the electoral process in Nepal, reservation in schools and colleges in India for students from the community, job and property security, and an arrangement at the Indo-Nepalese border so women from Nepal are not illegally brought into India as sex workers.

Developments taking place within the migrant Nepalese community in the country and in the State were discussed at a biennial State-level conference of the Karnataka-Kerala Joint State Committee of the association.

The conference, held at the Government Employees’ Association Hall, was to elect new office-bearers for the next two years and also discuss the various problems that the migrant Nepalese community faces.

“The memorandum is being prepared,” said Komal Prasad Suvedi, president, Karnataka-Kerala Joint State Committee, Migrant Nepalese Association of India, who was re-elected as president this year.

The association was started in 1966 with the intention of addressing the problems of the community.

“There has always been free movement between the people of India and Nepal. The living relationship between the two countries is based on this fact, and yet we are treated like foreign nationals,” claimed Mr. Suvedi.

The relationship between the two countries, which is based on the Indo-Nepal Treaty of 1950, needs renewal and adaptation, according to members of the association.

The Migrant Nepalese Association began its South Indian operations in 1985. It has 13 centres in 23 States.

The State-level conference was followed by a cultural programme. A special troupe, “Mir Miry Sanskritik Parivar,” of a cultural association of Nepalese children in Chennai, gave a performance.

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