Sri Lanka’s new Govt, and India and China

Sri Lanka has got a new President and a new government. The nation has voted in the common Opposition candidate Maithripala Sirisena, and voted out incumbent President Mahinda Rajapaksa. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has promptly congratulated Sirisena, indicating the traditional Indian readiness and willingness to work with the new government.
Indian concerns in and with Sri Lanka can be broadly identified with the ‘ethnic issue’ and the ‘China factor’. As the facilitator of 13-A power-devolution deriving from the Indo-Sri Lanka Accord of 1987, India owes to itself, the Tamils of Sri Lanka and that nation as a whole, to help restore ethnic peace and balance in that country.
The Indian sympathies and assistance, if any, for the Rajapaksa government to battle out the LTTE too derived from such a perception. However, the promised peace has eluded Sri Lanka, and that has had its overtones for politics and elections in India, with particular focus on southern Tamil Nadu. More so, it has also had impacted on bilateral relations in more ways than one, particularly in the larger international context of a succession of UNHRC votes on ‘accountability issue’ deriving from US-sponsored resolution on alleged ‘war crimes’ in Sri Lanka.

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