Zee Media Bureau/Deepak Nagpal
New Delhi: Former external affairs minister Natwar Singh has claimed that ex-prime minister Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated because of his Sri Lanka policy.
Singh told an English news channel during an interview that Rajiv Gandhi was badly advised as far as sending forces to Sri Lanka was concerned. The former PM sent troops to Sri Lanka without telling the Cabinet, Singh added.
The former Congressman is soon coming out with his autobiography titled `One Life is Not Enough: An Autobiography`.
It may be recalled that Rajiv Gandhi had decided to send the Indian Peace Keeping Force (IPKF) to Sri Lanka in July 1987 as part of the Indo-Lanka Peace Accord, which he had signed with the then Sri Lankan president JR Jayawardene.
“The IPKF was not prepared for what they were undertaking in Sri Lanka. There was no coherence in India’s policy,” Singh said during the interview, as per reports.
According to the former Congressman, Rajiv believed there was a simple solution to the Sri Lanka crisis and he even met LTTE chief Prabhakaran secretly. However, Singh added, Prabhakaran “double-crossed” Rajiv.
The Indian government had sent IPKF to Sri Lanka’s troubled north and east between 1987 and 1990, to ensure peace between government forces and the LTTE. The IPKF had been mandated to disarm the rebel outfit.
However, in May 1991, the former PM was assassinated by the LTTE at Sriperumbudur near Chennai.