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Sri Lanka, post-Geneva: It's politics now, not diplomacy
Mar 30, 2012

Sri Lanka, post-Geneva: It's politics now, not diplomacy

After the UNHRC meeting and the Indian vote against Sri Lanka, now it needs to go beyond Geneva, in the preservation of 'supreme national self-interest' in the case of both the countries. The ghost of Geneva would be hovering over them, yet Colombo should acknowledge the un-kept promises.

Sri Lanka: 'Ethnicity' cannot be the sole policy-marker for India
Mar 14, 2013

Sri Lanka: 'Ethnicity' cannot be the sole policy-marker for India

There are humanitarian and human rights issues in Sri Lanka. Yet, it is basically a political cause, still, which no one in Tamil Nadu seems to be talking about, any more.

Sri Lanka: 'Great expectations' from Modi's India
Jun 20, 2014

Sri Lanka: 'Great expectations' from Modi's India

Whether Indians have great expectations from their new Prime Minister Narendra Modi or not, India's neighbours, who see in the emergence of Modi from a grassroots-level politician to become the Prime Minister of the world's largest democracy, seem to have expectations and aspirations unmatched in the recent past.

Sri Lanka: A role (alone) for India, if at all?
Jan 17, 2014

Sri Lanka: A role (alone) for India, if at all?

Indian External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid's recent reminder that the Sri Lankan Government of the day alone had invited India to facilitate the peace process in the eighties should clarify a few points for Sri Lankans who harbour other views in the matter.

Sri Lanka: A strident message across the Palk Strait
Sep 13, 2013

Sri Lanka: A strident message across the Palk Strait

Tamil National Alliance (TNA) chief ministerial candidate for the Northern Provincial Council (NPC) elections in Sri Lanka, Justice C V Wigneswaran, could not have said it more candidly and categorically.

Sri Lanka: After the sacking, a new CJ?
Jan 14, 2013

Sri Lanka: After the sacking, a new CJ?

As a follow-up to the impeachment motion passed by Parliament by a two-thirds majority, Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa has sacked the nation's Chief Justice, Shirani Bandaranayake.

Sri Lanka: Cameron's presence and Manmohan Singh's absence
Dec 03, 2013

Sri Lanka: Cameron's presence and Manmohan Singh's absence

Post-CHOGM revival of what otherwise are short-term suspended issues may have the potential to unilaterally commit the Union of India to positions on Sri Lanka human rights issues that may be difficult to rescind closer to UNHRC March session.

Sri Lanka: China's prevarication on Ban's panel report
Apr 29, 2011

Sri Lanka: China's prevarication on Ban's panel report

Not many in Sri Lanka, particularly on the Government side, had expected China to play evasive on the report of the panel appointed by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on issues of accountability pertaining to the end-game of 'Eelam War IV'.

Sri Lanka: Competing resolutions can complicate decision for India at UNHRC
Feb 21, 2014

Sri Lanka: Competing resolutions can complicate decision for India at UNHRC

At the UNHRC session next month, India should take the initiative to work out a consensus resolution, where not just the Sri Lanka-related 'accountability' concerns of the West but also the competing counter-concerns of 'friends of Sri Lanka' are also addressed.

Sri Lanka: Contextualising 13-A
May 04, 2012

Sri Lanka: Contextualising 13-A

With hopes, if not indications, of an early revival of some form of consultative process on power-devolution in the air in Sri Lanka, there is an accompanying need for contextualising some of the well-entrenched political positions on arguments in the matter.

Sri Lanka: Death sentence for Indians stresses urgent need to resolve fishers' problems
Nov 01, 2014

Sri Lanka: Death sentence for Indians stresses urgent need to resolve fishers' problems

It may be time for both the Centre and the Tamil Nadu Government to actively consider the alternate, 'deep-sea fishing', away from the Sri Lankan waters, if India's Palk Strait fishers and bilateral relations were not to run aground.

Sri Lanka: Delayed damage-control on global front?
Jul 10, 2010

Sri Lanka: Delayed damage-control on global front?

By declaring fresh intentions to revive GSP-Plus talks with the European Union (EU), and ensuring the withdrawal of anti-UN fast by incumbent Minister Wimal Weerawansa, the Sri Lankan Government seems to be now engaged in damage control on the global diplomatic front, whose results are as yet unpredictable.

Sri Lanka: Did the Indian vote help - and how?
Mar 30, 2013

Sri Lanka: Did the Indian vote help - and how?

'Competitive politics' in Tamil Nadu was only one element in India's vote for the US Resolution. But there has been a general sense of dissatisfaction across the State with the Sri Lankan Government's perceived unwillingness to stand by its war-time promises.

Sri Lanka: Fishing for a solution in the Palk Bay
Apr 12, 2013

Sri Lanka: Fishing for a solution in the Palk Bay

Independent of the media-hype on all 'controversial things' that the Tamil Nadu Government and Chief Minister Jayalalithaa may be saying on the 'fishing issue', they have also quietly initiated steps over the past couple of years.

Sri Lanka: Impasse in peace process should worry friends
Oct 05, 2012

Sri Lanka: Impasse in peace process should worry friends

The current impasse in the peace process in Sri Lanka should worry friends of the nation, including India. Starting haltingly in the post-war months, the negotiations between the Government and the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) has been deadlocked...

Sri Lanka: India reaches out to the Tamils
Sep 11, 2010

Sri Lanka: India reaches out to the Tamils

Indian Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao's tour of the war-ravaged areas in the North and East of Sri Lanka has come as a perceptible first step towards the Indian Government repairing relations with the Tamil community in the island-nation.

Sri Lanka: Indian PM's visit on cards?
Jun 10, 2011

Sri Lanka: Indian PM's visit on cards?

The week-end Sri Lanka visit of the Indian troika comprising National Security Advisor (NSA) Shivshanker Menon, Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao and Defence Secretary Pradeep Kumar is important to both the nations for reasons that are more than the obvious.

Sri Lanka: Is a new India-centric aid group more viable than others?
Jul 02, 2022

Sri Lanka: Is a new India-centric aid group more viable than others?

Aid from India, Japan, Russia and China seems to be more viable than aid from the West as it accompanies political conditionalities.

Sri Lanka: Is Indian concerns on Chinese naval presence justified?
Nov 18, 2014

Sri Lanka: Is Indian concerns on Chinese naval presence justified?

Since 2010, some 250 naval vessels from across a wide spectrum of nations have berthed at Sri Lankan ports. If Indians have to suspect Sri Lanka in the matter of Chinese naval vessels, then they would have to suspect a host of other nations.

Sri Lanka: Issues with India Need Early Resolution
Mar 18, 2011

Sri Lanka: Issues with India Need Early Resolution

The recent faux pas of Prime Minister D M Jayaratne's allegation of 'LTTE camps in Tamil Nadu' had the potential to damage bilateral relations with the Indian neighbour,

Sri Lanka: Keeping the Palk, Straight
Dec 07, 2012

Sri Lanka: Keeping the Palk, Straight

No other dispute, including the sensitive 'ethnic row', impacts as much on India-Sri Lanka relations than the 'fishing issue', particularly over the medium and long terms. Much as the Government of India is keen on seeing a negotiated settlement to the ethnic issue, the political solution would still have to be thrashed out by the stake-holders in Sri Lanka.

Sri Lanka: Moving away from bottom-trawling still the way out for TN fishers?
Sep 26, 2014

Sri Lanka: Moving away from bottom-trawling still the way out for TN fishers?

The much-publicised first round of the officials-level talks on resolving the India-Sri Lanka fishing issue has ended up as a non-starter. However, hopes still cannot be ruled out for a possible, if not early, solution.

Sri Lanka: Need for a 'national anthem' for all
Feb 08, 2013

Sri Lanka: Need for a 'national anthem' for all

In the heat and dust kicked off by issues such as the impeachment of Chief Justice Shirani Bandaranayake, Sri Lanka missed what could well have emerged as a national discourse on an issue of equal, if not greater import.

Sri Lanka: Need to revisit past positions on ethnic front
Jun 14, 2013

Sri Lanka: Need to revisit past positions on ethnic front

Reports that the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) leadership is in Delhi this week for an exchange of views with the Indian leadership should be utilised by both sides to review their known positions on 13-A, and should not stop with reiterating the same.

Sri Lanka: Playing peace-maker between India and China?
Apr 03, 2015

Sri Lanka: Playing peace-maker between India and China?

Reports that Chinese President Xi Jinping had proposed trilateral talks involving the shared Indian neighbour at a meeting with visiting Sri Lankan counterpart Maithripala Sirisena should make New Delhi sit up and take notice.

Sri Lanka: Poll Results and the Peace Process
Apr 06, 2004

Sri Lanka: Poll Results and the Peace Process

The just-concluded parliamentary polls in Sri Lanka may have a lesson or two for political parties in India, which too is facing elections in the coming weeks. If past parallels are any indicator of a sub-continental voter-behaviour, the average Sri Lankan has gone with bread-and-butter issues, highlighted by the United People¿s Freedom Alliance (UPFA)

Sri Lanka: Prescription for a political solution
Jul 19, 2012

Sri Lanka: Prescription for a political solution

Unknown to the world and unacknowledged by the international community, Sri Lanka may be running to a point of no-return, all over again. 'International intervention' in the form of UNHRC resolutions has made the Government of President Mahinda Rajapaksa more vulnerable in electoral terms ? or,

Sri Lanka: Recognising India's role in growth
Jul 22, 2011

Sri Lanka: Recognising India's role in growth

In an observation recently in the Sri Lankan Parliament, External Affairs Minister G L Peiris asserted that the country could not achieve its development goals without India, which was going to play a vital role in achieving such targets.

Sri Lanka: Swapping of fishers, just a beginning
Dec 31, 2014

Sri Lanka: Swapping of fishers, just a beginning

The Centre needs to consider a short-cut into the seas for the most-affected Rameswaram fishers in particular to cut their travel time, diesel storage and the like by 8-10 hours, while going into the deep-seas. It will also be their collective responsibility to motivate, train and equip the southern coastal fishers in deep-sea fishing.

Sri Lanka: Taking the momentum forward
Oct 15, 2010

Sri Lanka: Taking the momentum forward

Though the Delhi visit of President Rajapaksa was CW Games-centric, it also caused raising of eyebrows in the strategic community in New Delhi, wondering if the re-elected President, who is scheduled to visit China later this month, is seeking to strike a parity in bilateral relations with the two Asian giants.

Sri Lanka: Taking the Peace Process Forward
Apr 19, 2004

Sri Lanka: Taking the Peace Process Forward

The end to ¿Karuna rebellion¿ inside the LTTE, as fast as it commenced in early March also marks the beginning of a new, rather revived pace in the Sri Lanka peace process. Within days of telling the world who was the boss in all the Tamil-speaking areas in the North and the East, the LTTE sat across the table with the Government team, facilitated again by the Norway-led Sri Lankan Monitoring Mission (SLMM),

Sri Lanka: Tales which pictures don't tell
Feb 20, 2013

Sri Lanka: Tales which pictures don't tell

Since the BBC Channel IV film director has indicated that one purpose of the controversial film on the Sri Lankan war may have been to act in a particular way at the UNHRC session in Geneva next month, New Delhi has to be wary of efforts to influence its decision.

Sri Lanka: Tamil separatists putting India on notice again?
Jun 09, 2015

Sri Lanka: Tamil separatists putting India on notice again?

With Tamil Nadu Assembly elections due by May next year and an anti-Jaya political realignment likely on cards, the Sri Lankan Tamil 'separatists' appear to be trying to drive a wedge between political parties in Tamil Nadu. The purpose seems to be to try and embarrass prospective allies of the DMK.

Sri Lanka: Tamils as 'masters of their destiny'
Aug 17, 2013

Sri Lanka: Tamils as 'masters of their destiny'

The moderate Tamil polity in Sri Lanka has been slow in delivering on the promises given to the Government side on the one hand, and to the international facilitator of any given time, on the other.

Sri Lanka: The Diaspora Talk
Nov 12, 2010

Sri Lanka: The Diaspora Talk

Overnight, there is more activity on the Sri Lankan Tamil Diaspora front than earlier. It is not only that the 'Trans-national government of Tamil Eelam' (TNGTE) has given itself a 'cabinet'with US-based Rudrakumaran as 'prime minister',

Sri Lanka: Thinking beyond UNHRC-3
Feb 07, 2014

Sri Lanka: Thinking beyond UNHRC-3

Now there is a consistent and continuing apprehension about the West coming up with a draft at the Geneva session that will have greater acceptability in the UNHRC already. It is here India may be called upon to take a position all over again.

Sri Lanka: TN initiative to de-congest Palk Bay fishing takes concrete shape
Jul 29, 2015

Sri Lanka: TN initiative to de-congest Palk Bay fishing takes concrete shape

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa recently distributed Rs 30 lakh as subsidy, in a total estimated cost of Rs 60 lakhs, to help enable the State's fishermen to undertake deep-sea fishing in a big way. It is expected to help decongest fishing in the Palk Bay, and help reduce tensions with Sri Lankan fishers.

Sri Lanka: TNA sending out confusing signals to India?
Oct 20, 2014

Sri Lanka: TNA sending out confusing signals to India?

Sri Lanka's Northern Province Tamil Chief Minister C V Wigneswaran seems to be sending contradictory signals to India through his actions. On the one hand, he wants India to play an active role in finding a 'political solution' to the ethnic problem. On the other, he boycotted the India-funded Colombo-Jaffna railway inauguration and earlier President's invitation to be part of the delegation to India.

Sri Lanka: Trincomalee in development discourse
Aug 03, 2012

Sri Lanka: Trincomalee in development discourse

In a masterly stroke aimed at improving bilateral economic relations on the one hand, and job opportunities for the Tamil victims of the ethnic war, New Delhi and Colombo have agreed to set up Special Economic Zones (SEZ) for Indian engineering.

Sri Lanka: Understanding the UNHRC vote
Mar 16, 2012

Sri Lanka: Understanding the UNHRC vote

The increasing effort at marginalisation of Sri Lanka in the international arena, with hopes that a vote against the country at UNHRC could well shame the Government into taking pro-active measures at an early political solution are misplaced, at best.

Sri Lanka: UNHRC can still be an albatross
Jun 03, 2015

Sri Lanka: UNHRC can still be an albatross

The Sri Lankan Government's decision not to send a 'special delegation' for the 29th session of the UNHRC this month should be seen as an attempt to try and 'de-politicise' the engagement with the UN body.

Sri Lanka: UNHRC, Ukraine-Crimea and the 'neo cold war'
Mar 22, 2014

Sri Lanka: UNHRC, Ukraine-Crimea and the 'neo cold war'

Independent of the fate of the UNHRC vote this time, the recent referendum in distant Crimea should be a shocking eye-opener to Sri Lankan stake-holders of the 'ethnic issue', 'accountability calls' and all attendant concerns.

Sri Lanka: Velvet gloves yet a firm grip, from India
May 23, 2014

Sri Lanka: Velvet gloves yet a firm grip, from India

By inviting SAARC Heads of Government for his inauguration, prime minister-designate Narendra Modi has demonstrated a firm grip over the emerging foreign policy scenario(s) and his vision of and for an India of the future.

Sri Lanka: What after India's UNHRC-3
Mar 28, 2014

Sri Lanka: What after India's UNHRC-3

India's abstention from voting at the UNHRC session in Geneva means that India has now re-positioned itself to re-engage the Sri Lankan stake-holders in a constructive way, as articulated by Foreign Minister Salman Khurshid long before the vote.

Sri Lanka: What the TNA can do for India to help
Jul 10, 2014

Sri Lanka: What the TNA can do for India to help

Public posturing apart, moderate Tamils in Sri Lanka seem to want India to intercede on their behalf all over again and help arrive at a political settlement on the ethnic issue with their nation's government.

Sri Lanka: Where bilateral interests with India collude or collide
Oct 28, 2011

Sri Lanka: Where bilateral interests with India collude or collide

With the international community refusing to take its focus off the human rights situation in Sri Lanka even in the midst of developments in West Asia and North Africa, there are now expectations that it could well be Colombo's turn to be called to account for, though to be at a lesser degree.