India welcomes Lanka polls, presses for 13th Amendment in North
Posted on: 07:05 AM IST Sep 26, 2013
Colombo: Welcoming the historic polls to Sri Lanka's three provincial councils, including the North, India has underlined the need for implementation of key commitments to the international community, like the 13th Amendment.
"We look forward to the implementation by Government of Sri Lanka of other important commitments made to the international community, including the full implementation of the 13th Amendment and going beyond it," a statement issued bythe Indian High Commission here said.
The statement came days after the Tamil National Alliance secured landslide victory in Saturday's northern provincial council election. TNA, the main Tamil party, won 30 of the 38 seats, recording a three-fourth majority in the historic polls held after a gap of 25 years in the former LTTE-ruled Northern Province which has Tamil majority.
Commenting on the post election scenario, India welcomed the positive statements made by the TNA and the Government of Sri Lanka. "It is indeed a matter of satisfaction that they have expressed willingness to work with each other for the progress of the people of the Northern Province. We would urge both sides to engage constructively, in a spirit of partnership and mutual accommodation, so that the urgent needs of the people of the Northern Province, which has recently emerged from the throes of a thirty-year long armed conflict, are addressed with a sense of urgency and purpose.
"Only such a cooperative approach will pave the way for genuine reconciliation between the communities involved," the statement said. The TNA victory based on their Tamil nationalist election manifesto would stand a test for the Sri Lankan government on its intent to dilute provincial council powers, analysts note.
The 13th Amendment introduced provincial councils with specified powers based on the provisions of the Indo-Sri Lanka Accord of 1987.