India calls for implementation of 13th amendment to Sri Lankan constitution
The government of Sri Lanka plans to bring a 20th amendment followed by the introduction of a new constitution
As the Sri Lankan government gears up to introduce a new amendment bill, India has made it clear that it wants the full implementation of the 13th amendment which created Provincial Councils in the island country and made Sinhala and Tamil as official languages.
According to a report published in Sri Lankan publication News First, the statement was made by India during Indian’s High Commissioner Gopal Baglay’s meeting with members of Tamil National Alliance political party.
The Indian Embassy in Sri Lanka confirmed its stance on twitter, stating, “High Commissioner retreated India’s longstanding position on peace and reconciliation and full implementation of the Thirteen Amendment.”
The High Commissioner also congratulated the TNA party on performance in the recent elections. It wrote, “A TNA delegation called on the High Commissioner today during which the latter congratulated the TNA for their performance at the recent general elections.”
TNA leader C.V. Vigneswaran said that the Sri Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa cannot do away with such a bill. He said, “He cannot put away the 13th amendment arbitrarily.”
The government of Sri Lanka plans to bring a 20th amendment followed by the introduction of a new constitution. The TNA objects to the abolishment of the 13th amendment and the introduction of the new one.
Dr Sarath Weerasekera, the provincial council state minister said, “The 13th amendment was not something that we requested. It was forcibly given to us by India.”
The minister further said that the government is now making an assessment of the contribution of the act to the previous administrations.
News First reported that the government lawmakers are ready to consider the 13th amendment that introduced the system of provincial councils, which are now defunct due to a delayed poll.