Nepal ends India’s monopoly on internet access with new Chinese link


BEIJING: Nepal ended India’s monopoly on internet access yesterday by opening a new optical fibre link across the Himalayan mountains to China.

Nepal’s information and communication minister Mohan Bahadur Basnet and Chinese ambassador Yu Hong inaugurated the link during a ceremony in Kathmandu, reflecting China’s growing engagement in a region seen as India’s backyard. Till Friday, landlocked Nepal was totally dependent on India for access to the worldwide web through connections at Biratnagar, Bhairahawa and Birgunj, for which it pays a substantial sum as fees and royalties. Besides state-run Indian firms, Nepal has been acquiring bandwidth from private players such as Tata and Airtel and BSNL —Agencies