NEW DELHI: If it is Nepal's growing proximity with China that is making Prime Minister K P Sharma Oli act in an independent fashion, some of the resultant damage for India could be self-inflicted. While India denies that it was responsible for the blockade which threatened to cripple Nepal's economy, the fact is that the recent strain in India-Nepal relations has coincided with China surpassing India in the list of top aid donors to Nepal, Times of India in a report said on Monday.

The latest report by the Nepal government on official development assistance (ODA) shows that in FY 2014-2015, India's ODA disbursement to Nepal plummeted by over 50% in the first year of the NDA government, allowing Beijing to overtake India in the list of top assistance providers.

While China's disbursement of ODA stood at $37.95 million, India accounted for a little over $22 million. This is the first time in the past five years that India is not in the list of top 5 ODA providers (in terms of disbursement) among Nepal's bilateral development partners.China is now in fourth position, after the UK, the US and Japan, and followed by Switzerland.

Nepal's latest Development Cooperation Report acknowledges that India and China have also provided technical assistance to Nepal through scholarships, training and study tours conducted in their countries and which is not fully reflected in the total volume of assistance.

"Though, both of these countries are very important aid providers to Nepal, the assistance received from them has not been well reported as in the previous years,'' it says. India has also committed $1,400 million for Nepal's earthquake reconstruction work as against China's $766 million.