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Vasan joins chorus for boycott of Colombo CHOGM

PTI Chennai | Updated on March 12, 2018

Joining the chorus for boycott of a Commonwealth meeting in Colombo over Sri Lankan Tamils issue, Union Minister and senior Congress leader G K Vasan today said the venue should be shifted “if there is no change in Lanka’s approach” towards the ethnic Tamils.

“It is my personal opinion... I feel in the coming days, if there is no change in the approach of Sri Lanka (towards ethnic Tamils), the countries that voted (in favour of the US sponsored-resolution in UNHRC) should jointly make efforts to shift the venue of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) to some other country,” he told reporters here.

He also said Prime Minister Manmohan Singh should attend the meeting on the basis of the collective decision.

Vasan’s remarks come days after ruling AIADMK and DMK in Tamil Nadu demanded that India should boycott CHOGM scheduled to be held in November in Colombo.

He said the Sri Lankan government should understand India’s position and act accordingly.

Rejecting the charge that India watered down the US resolution against Sri Lanka at UNHRC, Vasan said India voted against Colombo for a second time.

“The UPA government has clearly voted against the Sri Lankan government in the resolution. That shows the strong commitment India has, UPA has towards the rehabilitation, resettlement and regaining powers to the Tamil people in the region,” he said, adding India was in the forefront in bringing together major countries to vote against Sri Lanka.

It would be India’s duty to ensure that Tamils in Sri Lanka lived in peace in their own land and regain their original status. ”... The government of India will successfully take steps for our Tamil people in Sri Lanka,” he said.

On the IPL Governing Council’s decision not to play Sri Lankan cricketers in Chennai matches, he said though there was no link between sports and politics, the move was right.

Referring to the ongoing students protests on the Sri Lankan Tamils issue, he said he would convey to the Centre their sentiments.

Replying to a question on the charge against Sri Lankan High Commissioner Prasad Kariyawasam that he tried to instigate north Indians against people of Tamil Nadu, Vasan said, “He should speak befitting his position.”

Published on March 29, 2013

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