MR to meet Modi

By Easwaran Rutnam

Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa is to travel to India next month for talks with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, The Sunday Morning learnt.

This will be the third high-level visit to India by a member of the new Government.

Sources at the Prime Minister’s Office said that Rajapaksa is expected to travel to India in early February but the dates were yet to be finalised.

India is keen to establish closer links with the Government of President Gotabaya Rajapaksa and offer financial assistance to develop the country, particularly the Tamil-dominated North and East and estate community areas.

President Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s first overseas visit after taking office was to India where he had talks with Prime Minister Modi. Just last week, Foreign Minister Dinesh Gunawardena was in India for talks with Indian External Affairs Minister Dr. S. Jaishankar.

Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa’s India visit will come as the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) continues to push for a political solution for the Tamils which includes the full implementation of the Indian-brokered 13th Amendment to the Constitution.

During President Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s visit to India, the Indian Prime Minister had noted the importance of implementing the 13th Amendment to the Constitution.