oppn parties India Must Work To Prevent China To Cull Favour With The New Regime In Sri Lanka

News Snippets

  • Government data placed in Parliament shows a sharp decline in job creation under its flagship employment generation schemes
  • The government is working to amend the Aadhar Act to make it possible for the Aadhar to be linked with the Voter's ID. Election Commission will simultaneously be empowered to link the two
  • Tapas Pal, former TMC MP, dies of cardiac arrest in Mumbai. He was questioned for his alleged involvement in the Rose Valley scam and gained notoriety for his rape remark in 2014.
  • Bypoll to panchayats in J&K, scheduled for March in eight phases, postponed due to security concerns.
  • Supreme Court says that overhead power transmission lines going through the Desert National Park in Jaisalmer in Rajasthan must go underground to save the Great Indian Bustard and the Lesser Florican
  • Pakistan not placed in FAFT blacklist but kept on the grey list with warning
  • The government is expected to announce duty cuts and other measures to combat business disruption due to coronavirus outbreak in China
  • South-East Asia loses its charm as a tourist destination after the coronavirus outbreak in China, airfares dip to new lows
  • DMK leader RS Bharathi says media is running like the red light area in Mumbai
  • A Delhi court issues fresh warrants for the hanging of the Nirbhaya convicts. Fixes the date for March 3
  • Supreme Court appoints a mediation team to ask Shaheen Bagh protestors to avoid blocking the road and shift to another venue
  • Supreme Court says peaceful protests cannot be denied in a democracy but also says that a balance must be struck as protestors cannot be allowed to block roads
  • Telcos pay part of their dues for AGR after the bashing from the Supreme Court
  • Debbie Abrahams, a Labour MP from UK, who was critical of India's action in Kashmir, not allowed to enter India. She was deported to Dubai from the Delhi airport
  • Sidharth Shukla wins Big Boss 13
Former principal secretary to PM Modi, Nripendra Mishra, appointed to head the temple committee of the Ram Janambhoomi Teertha Kshetra Trust
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India Must Work To Prevent China To Cull Favour With The New Regime In Sri Lanka

By A Special Correspondent

People in Sri Lanka have ostensibly voted for national security. But in doing so, they have shown that the country has become highly polarized. Although Gotabaya Rajapaksa is the clear winner, he has won on the back of the consolidation of the Sinhalese-Buddhist votes. Preliminary data shows that Tamils and Muslims have not voted for his party. This will make Sri Lanka ethnically and religiously divided and unstable and that will not be in India's interest.

The Rajapaksa family has a history of being highhanded. When Mahinda Rajapaksa was president in 2007, he allowed his brother Gotabaya to crush the Tamil insurgency. But in the process, whispers of cruelty and war crimes committed against the Tamils were heard and these were never addressed.

But it seems that in the aftermath of the IS-sponsored suicide bombing in the island's churches and hotels that left hundreds dead, people in Sri Lanka, at least the Sinhalese-Buddhist majority, decided that it was time to bring back the Rajapaksas. It was clear that the Rajapaksas will come back when they swept the local body elections in the country in 2018 and when the bombers struck in Easter this year, the weak "national unity government" that replaced Mahinda Rajapaksa in 2015 stood no chance. Most Sri Lankans believe that President Maithripala Sirisena and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe compromised national security and were not able to prevent the attacks through their bad policies.

India will need to quickly alter its policies vis-a-vis Sri Lanka as the Rajapaksas always tilted towards China in the past. Although Gotabaya Rajapaksa would not like to antagonize India, he will still prefer doing business with the Chinese. Given China's interest in controlling the oceans, any foothold it establishes in Sri Lanka will compromise India's security. Hence, India will have to move fast and ensure that the new government in the island nation does not grant any military favours to China.