Use of Indian currency notes of Rs 200, Rs 500 and Rs 2,000 denominations banned in Nepal: The Nepal government has issued an order not to use, carry or keep Indian currency notes of Rs 200, Rs 500, Rs 2,000 denominations, reports said on Friday. According to a report published in the Kathmandu Post on Thursday, the Nepal government took the decision after a meeting of the Council of Ministers. The move is likely to affect Indian tourists in Nepal and the Nepalis people who are working in India. In 2013, Nepal had imposed a similar ban for 10 years on Rs 500 and Rs 1000 Indian currency notes upon request from the Indian government to curb unauthorized trade between the two neighbours.

Crores of banned Indian currency notes, in the denominations of Rs 500 and Rs 1000, were affected after the Narendra Modi-led NDA government’s demonetisation initiative in 2016. However, both the neighbours have yet to agree on how to exchange the old Indian bank notes after India’s shock announcement in 2016 to ban Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 rupee currency notes. India is Nepal’s largest trade partner and the supplier of the bulk of consumer goods and ban of the said notes is likely to hamper cross-border trade.

The Indian currency is widely used by businesses and individuals in Nepal as both the nations allow their citizens to move freely in each other’s territory without restrictions. In terms of currency exchange value, 1 Indian Rupee equals 1.60 Nepalese Rupee (approx). According to a report published in the Statesman, Nepal pegs its currency – the Nepalese rupee (NPR) – to the Indian rupee (INR) primarily because three-fifths of the country’s trade deficit is accounted for by India.

During his third visit to Nepal in December 2018 since assuming office in 2014, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that Nepal tops India’s ‘Neighbourhood First’ policy and announced a Rs 100 crore package to develop Janakpur while invoking mythological links between the two countries.

Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath on Wednesday attended the symbolic wedding of Lord Rama with Sita and offered prayers at the famous Janaki temple in Nepal’s historic Janakpur city in a bid to bolster cultural ties between the two nations.

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