After a gap of 17 months, the first Indian tourist travelled into Nepal by land on Friday after the Himalayan nation unsealed its land border with India for the first time after the COVID-19 pandemic began.
According to a Kathmandu Post report, local authorities and tourism entrepreneurs greeted the first vehicle carrying Indian tourists at the border town of Birgunj.
Thrilled with the warm welcome, an Indian national travelling with three other companions, Anuj Sinha, told the Post that they had planned a holiday trip to Hetauda.
With the restriction on the movement of vehicles with Indian number plates removed, the mayor of Birgunj Metropolitan City Vijay Kumar Sarawagi said he expected Indian tourist arrivals to increase. “It will also reduce the difficulties of people of both countries who were prevented from travelling due to the COVID-19 pandemic,” he told the Nepali newspaper.
Last year, Nepal had sealed its 1,800 kilometre-long border with India in March as coronavirus cases began to spread in both countries. The only exception was for trucks carrying essential goods.
Source: The Wire