After the excitement of the Yoshiro Mori visit -the shortest ever to Nepal by a visiting chieftain -Nepalis can now get back to the serious task of nation-building.Nepal is forging full-steam ahead on the path of national development,and the Japanese knew they shouldn 't take too much of our time.
They know we are a people in a hurry.This is why they promised to keep the visit as short as possible so that 300,000 Kathmandu commuters would be stranded in traffic at Tundikhel for only half a day. Understandably,Mori-san was concerned that Nepal may be engaged in developing weapons of mass destruction.Unusually reliable sources close to the Prime Minister have told us that the Nepali delegation refused to budge on the weapons issue. "Nepal laid it out in no uncertain terms that as a sovereign nation with lots of territorial integrity (not to mention extra-territorial ambitions)we reserved the right to develop any weapon of our choice whenever and wherever we want," said the nameless source on condition of complete anonymity,who in actual fact does not exist and is a figment of my imagination.
Pretty soon they realised that Nepal was stubborn, so they pushed for a Japan-Nepal Mutual Non- Aggression Pact.No doubt,this is a very touchy issue. The Japanese remember all very well how we chased them out of Mandalay 50 years ago with our then weapon of mass destruction,the khukri.
By this time,the Mori delegation was looking very worried,according to our source.The Japanese said they would feel more secure if Nepal signed the CTBT and refrained from building nuclear weapons as well. Mori said,and here I quote from his press conference: "We humbly request Nepal to ratify the CTBT,it would send a very strong message to India and Pakistan." We said we 'd think about it.
By now the Japanese were in panic,they 'd have to go home empty-handed.There was one last point: Tokyo 's request that Kathmandu put in a good word with the Big Five that it get a permanent Security Council seat.But the Nepali side played hardball,we would endorse it only if the Japanese opened their market to Nepali gundruk.
There was very little time left for other business. And an official statement said the talks were "satisfac- tory and fruitful " ((half-ripe mango and guava slices were served),that the general tenor of the talks were "comprehensive and constructive " ((Japanese contrac- tors may be allowed to bid for Nepali infrastructure projects),and that there was a "free and frank exchange of views " ((Mori gave Girijababu a postcard of Fuji-san, and Girijababu gave Mori a poster of Phewa Tal).
And on that note,Yoshiro Mori rushed out to the airport to catch his plane back.