Nepal Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli with Chinese President Xi Jinping

Sixty per cent of Nepal's exports and imports are handled by Indian ports in Haldia and Vishakhapatnam and nearly 8 million Nepalese work in India

Nepal is landlocked between two Asian giants surrounded by India on three sides. It has been more of a boon than a bane for Nepal.

New Delhi has been Kathmandu's biggest development and trade partner but in recent months but PM Oli seems to want to burn all bridges.

Nepal shares 1,850 km-long border with India. There are nearly 20 trade points along the line from Mechi in the east to Makahli in the west.

It stands as a testimony to Nepal's reliance on India with 64 per cent of Kathmandu's total trade India is Nepal's biggest trading partner.

Nepal imports crucial products from India namely petrol, oil and lubricants including iron, steel, cement, machinery, pharmaceuticals. India also allows informal or non-tariff trade in the Terai region especially for goods produced in the border states of UP, Bihar and West Bengal.

Sixty per cent of Nepal's exports and imports are handled by Indian ports in Haldia and Vishakhapatnam. India has also agreed to give Nepal access to its Dharma and Mundra ports. Nepal, therefore, relies on India for access to the sea. It also depends on India for employment.

Nearly 8 million Nepalese work in India. They are employed in various sectors both in formal and informal spheres and do not require work permits. Fifteen per cent of Nepal's total remittances come from India. It accounts for 4 to 5 per cent of Kathmandu's GDP, so far in 2020, Nepal has received $356.69 million in remittances from India.

India also helps in grooming Nepal's students with at least 12,800 Nepalese students enrolled in Indian universities who are eligible for fee waivers. India also allocates 3,000 ministry of external affairs scholarships to Nepal.

Also, 40,000 Nepalese nationals serve in the seven Gorkha regiments of the Indian army. They enjoy the same retirement benefits as their Indian counterparts. At least 80,000 Nepalese are currently on India's pension books. The Indian army also supports 11,000 widows of Nepalese soldiers and 17,000 retired soldiers from Assam Rifles.

India spends $12 billion in pension on Nepalese nationals every year. China, on the other hand, accounts for just 14 per cent of Nepal's trade with India at 64 per cent. The nearest Chinese port is three times the distance of Haldia. Also, studying in a Chinese university is a challenge for a Nepalese student given the fact that Mandarin is mostly the medium of instruction. There is also no guarantee the PLA will recruit Nepalese troops.

And about pensions, on that, the Dragon has no compassion.