Ties with Lanka will continue to strengthen: India

Last Updated: Thursday, November 21, 2013 - 22:50

New Delhi: India on Thursday asserted that the Prime Minister`s decision not to visit Sri Lanka for CHOGM was absolutely no "reflection" on the strength of the bilateral relationship and that the two countries need to work together as they cannot "wish away" each other.

A top government source also denied that by not going to Sri Lanka, India has lost some kind of "leverage" and said India`s style of conveying its point was different from that of the UK.

"Our engagement with Sri Lanka will continue. Prime Minister`s not going has absolutely no reflection on the strength of the bilateral relationship. It will continue to strengthen and continue to intensify.

"We need to work with each other... As Sri Lanka cannot be wished away and India can also not be wished away... There are so much commonalities of interest on so many other issues which will go forward," the source said, adding there was "disappointment" which was understandable.

Asked if by skipping Lanka visit, India lost some kind of leverage, the source said there "are levers and levers" even in the process of engagement at the working level.

On the criticism that India`s foreign policy on Sri Lanka was hostage to domestic politics, the sources said there was not a single country where domestic imperatives do not impact the foreign policy.

On UK Prime Minister David Cameron`s remarks on human rights situation in Sri Lanka, the source said it was not India`s style to do what Cameron did as in the South Asian context that kind of diplomacy could be "counterproductive".

India makes a point in a manner which is not very apparent but its interlocutors understand it, the source said.

On Land Boundary Agreement with Bangladesh, the source said the government will try once again to introduce the bill in Parliament in the winter session and will talk to all political parties which have objection in this regard.


First Published: Thursday, November 21, 2013 - 22:50

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