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No compromise on more powers for SL Tamils-Singh

Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Friday reportedly stressed that there would be no compromise on Colombo’s promise to implement the 13th Amendment of the Sri Lankan Constitution which provides more powers to Tamil areas in Sri Lanka’s Northern and Eastern provinces.Dr. Singh thus assured a delegation of Congress MPs from Tamil Nadu in Parliament House on Friday.According to Congress Lok Sabha member from Cuddalore K.S. Alagiri, who was present at the meeting, the PM even quoted Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa as saying that his country would even implement “13 plus” (more than what was there in the amendment) for the welfare of Tamils.The 13th Amendment, prepared on the basis of the 1987 agreement signed by Rajiv Gandhi and J.R. Jayawardene (Indo-Sri Lanka Accord), devolves as many as 37 powers to the island nation’s Northern and Eastern provinces. Largely drawing on the Indian federal set-up, it has three lists which detailed power-sharing between Colombo and the provinces. Broadly, it provided for a merger of and certain financial provisions of the two provinces. The provinces would have an elected council, a Chief Minister and Ministers.The MPs said India should join hands with the United States in bringing out a Resolution against Sri Lanka asking it to categorically implement the recommendations of its own Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Committee (LLRC).Sri Lanka has not implemented the recommendations of the LLRC despite India and other countries voting in favour of a resolution censuring the island’s government last year at the UNHRC.“We feel that India should join hands with the United States in bringing out a Resolution against Sri Lanka to categorically implement the Recommendations of its own LLRC. This will certainly help in rendering justice to the Tamils of Sri Lanka, in addition to delegation of power in Government, conduct of free and fair elections in the Northern Province of Sri Lanka, and rehabilitation and resettlement of the displaced persons,” the MPs said in a memorandum.The MPs, who met Singh are N.S.V. Chitthan, M. Krishnaswamy, K.S. Alagiri, J.M. Haroon, S.S. Ramasubbu, P. Viswanathan and Manickam Tagore.They also said India should continuously support and work towards the welfare of the Tamils of Sri Lanka, so that they get equal opportunities and a safe and sound environment for a peaceful living.They also thanked the Centre for notifying the Cauvery Waters Dispute Tribunal’s final Award in the official Gazette of India.“We are quite sure, the publication of this notification in the Gazette would indeed bring in some respite to the people of the southern states of Kerala, Puducherry in general and Tamil Nadu in particular,” they said.

Author: TELO Admin