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Differences in UPA over Sri Lankan Tamils issue

Tamil parties are up in arms after fresh allegations about human rights violations against ethnic Tamils by Sri Lankan forces, in the wake of charges that 12-year-old son of LTTE Chief Prabhakaran was shot dead in cold blood.



New Delhi: Sharp differences in the UPA over the Sri Lankan Tamils issue came to the fore in Lok Sabha on Wednesday with the DMK accusing the Congress of leaving it in the "lurch" on the emotional issue.

"President`s Address failed to address (the Sri Lankan Tamils) issue. Tamils are weeping. ...They (Congress) have left the DMK in the lurch (on the issue)," DMK leader TKS Elangovan said.

Participating in the discussion on the Motion of Thanks to the President for his Address, he said India should consider tough actions including economic sanctions against Sri Lanka for violating human rights of ethnic Tamils in the island nation.

"Why can`t we impose economic sanction against Sri Lanka," Elangovan asked citing similar sanctions faced by India when it experimented atom bomb in Pokhran when Atal Bihari Vajpayee was the Prime Minister.

Elangovan`s speech was disrupted by Congress MPs including Aaroon Rasheed from Tamil Nadu, saying thousands of Sri Lankan Tamils were also killed by LTTE headed by V Prabhakaran.

Irked by the Congress MPs` allegation, Elangovan asked, "Do you want to take away the legacy of former Prime Ministers Indira Gandhi and Rajiv Gandhi" who were sympathetic towards Tamil`s cause.

When Sri Lanka says the 13th amendment in Sri Lankan Constitution for devolution of powers to provincial councils in that country will not be implemented, what will happen to "good intentions" of Rajiv Gandhi who was instrumental in signing an agreement with then Sri Lankan president Jayewardane in 1987, he asked. This amendment was part of the accord.
PTI

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