The Indo-Sri Lanka Accord called for the devolution of power to the provinces and resulted in the 13th Amendment to the Sri Lankan Constitution, which created provincial councils with a degree of decentralised power. Weerasekara is the minister in charge of the councils.
Weerasekara said Rajapaksa chose last year not to criticise India's revocation of statehood for Jammu and Kashmir region because it was an internal matter, while Modi may have called for power sharing with Tamils because India was party to the earlier agreement with Sri Lanka.
I have my reservations about the Indo-Lanka accord ... did India honour her part in that agreement? Weerasekara asked, adding that India had failed to ensure disarmament, an end to hostilities and the resettlement of displaced people.
So there is serious concern about the validity of the agreement, and if it's not valid I think India has no moral right to interfere in our affairs," Weerasekara said.
India in 1987 intervened to end the civil war between Sri Lankan government forces and minority ethnic Tamil rebels. Sri Lankan Tamils have family, linguistic and cultural ties with Tamils in South India, and India was eager that the conflict in its neighbouring country did not create unrest within its own territory.
India sent a peacekeeping force to implement the agreement but ended up fighting with the rebels before returning home with heavy losses. In 1991, a suspected Tamil Tiger suicide bomber killed former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi, who had signed the agreement.
Sri Lankan government forces crushed the rebels in 2009, ending a 26-year civil war that killed at least 100,000 people, according to the U.N.
Successive Sri Lankan governments have pledged to India and the U.S. that they will share more power with the Tamils to ensure peace, but President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, who was elected last November, has rejected the idea.
(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)
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