NEW DELHI: Nepal's national unity is incomplete without Madhesis and India can not remain "unaffected" by the developments in that country, a number of leaders from the community which shares close family and cultural ties with Indians, said today.
Speaking at a conference on Indo-Nepal ties, president of Terai Madhes Loktantrik Party Mahanth Thakur accused the Nepal government of turning the Terai region in the foothills of Himalayas, dominated by the Indian-origin Madhesi community, into a "colony".
"The constitution discriminates against us. There is no provision for equal rights in the Constitution. There are two Nepals and the Madhes region has been turned into a colony," he said.
The Madhesi community is opposed to carving out of seven provinces under the new Constitution and has been demanding adequate protection of their rights.
Former Transport minister and senior vice president of Tarai Madhes Loktantrik Party Hridayesh Tripathi asserted that the "national unity" of Nepal was "incomplete" without Madhesis.
"India cannot remain unaffected by the developments in its neighbouring country. Until and unless demands of the Madhesi community are addressed the Constitution of Nepal will remain incomplete," Sunil Bahadur Thapa of Rashtriya Prajatantra Party said.
Speaking at the conference, Union Minister Santosh Gangwar said relations between India and Nepal are inseparable and that the "haze' over the friendship should be cleared.
Senior JD(U) leader Sharad Yadav termed the Indo-Nepal relations as "intact" and called upon the people of the two countries to fight against the caste system.
Nepal's Ambassador in India Deep Kumar Upadhyay batted for adopting a "positive" outlook in furthering relations between the two countries.
Maintaining that unrest in the Himalayan nation will also affect India, he said a peaceful and politically stable Nepal is in the interest of India.
"If there is any unrest in Nepal, there will also be problem here (India). Peace and political stability in Nepal is in the interest of India's future."
The Ambassador termed Madhes region (Terai) of his country as the "real Nepal" and the "meeting point" of culture and civilization of different groups including Madhesis, Tharus and Muslims.
Governor of Goa Mridula Sinha, former Union Minister Sri Prakash Jaiswal, former Foreign Minister of Nepal Upendra Yadav and many other speakers addressed the conference.
Three major demands of the Madhesi community include re-demarcation of the boundary, inclusion of proportionate representation and allocation of Parliament seats on the basis of population.