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Indo-Nepal border blockade creating huge economic crisis: Wagle

A displaced earthquake victim carries a Nepalese national flag as he waits in a line to receive food and water at an open ground, in Kathmandu, Nepal May 4, 2015. REUTERS/Adnan Abidi - RTX1BG7D
New Delhi: In a recently held conference here, former member of National Planning Commission of Nepal, Swarnim Wagle, expressed concern over the grieving impact of economic blockade due to Madheshi agitation since past four months in the Himalayan nation.

“The direct hit was of course medicines, food, and fuel. People have been suffering a lot. All the industries have been shut down, people have been laid off,” said, Wagle, Former member of National Planning Commission of Nepal, addressing a conference titled ‘Trade and Employment challenges: in South Asia’.

Since the Madhesi protest began in September this year, businesses are struggling to stay open, with only 30 percent of Nepal’s industries operational.

“Everything is running under half capacity. Hospitals, restaurants, and the public transportation have been facing difficulties and yet in parallel we are giving rise to this sort of this underground economy which should be hard to tame later on and it already imposing rule of law it is challenge for poor country like Nepal and when we have given monster been given rise to as a result of this blockade, it’s deeply unfortunate what is happening,” Wagle said.

Due to the ongoing crisis, thousands of cargo trucks stalled at the Indian border, Nepalese gas stations have received only 15 percent of regular fuel supplies which is making survival difficult.

“The earthquake which is the biggest natural disaster over 80 years in Nepal the blockade is probably having an economic impact that is greater than that the earthquake posed. All the industries are shut down now. There is severe shortage of fuel, essential medicines and food,” said Wagle.

Nepal relies on India for majority of its imports. Due to the recent crisis Nepal’s daily life has been crippled and so far negotiations between the leaders have failed to solve the ongoing crisis. (ANI)