Deputy High Commissioner of India to Sri Lanka, Mr. Vinod K Jacob says that India-Sri Lanka bilateral relations are at their highest point and attributed deep rooted people to people connect as the main reason for the same. He made references to five specific developments that are central to the excellent bilateral relationship.
First, the people and Government of India extended support during Vaccine Maitri and with expedited issuance of medical visas, immediately after lifting of travel restrictions by Government of Sri Lanka.
Substantial support was extended through the iconic Suwaseriya 1990 ambulance during Covid as well as through medical supplies in response to specific requests from hospitals in Kandy Hambantota and Jaffna.
Government of Sri Lanka the people and Government of India extended economic, financial and humanitarian support worth USD 4 billion in 2022.
India has been supporting Sri Lanka at G20 meetings and also invited HE President Ranil Wickremesinghe to Voice of Global South Summit in January 2023 as a mark of solidarity.
drawing on the recent experiences, there exists considerable scope for deeper engagement in the health and well being sectors as well as in traditional medical systems.
Prime Minister of Sri Lanka Dinesh Gunawardena, was the Chief Guest at the inauguration ceremony of the Medicare 2023 health care exhibition in Colombo on 3 March 2023
A delegation comprising around 40 Indian companies in the healthcare sector including 25 hospitals has set up an ‘India Pavilion’ at Medicare 2023, which is being held during 3-5 March 2023.
India believes that for Sri Lanka to hit the road to economic recovery at full throttle, it has to put the past behind it, particularly in terms of power devolution for the minority Tamil community, which was also the cause of years of protests, followed by decades of youth militancy, in turn graduating into a deadly cocktail of LTTE terrorism and conventional war.
If New Delhi is not concerned about the possible revival of the majority left-leaning Sinhala youth militancy of the early seventies and late eighties (JVP Insurgency I & II, 1971 and 1989), there were no outstanding political issues or policy options that Colombo had to address at present.
It possibly included as the potential for Sri Lanka to make the eastern harbour-town of Trincomalee into an energy hub ’ and also commercially exploit the nation’s wind-energy capacity.
The restoration of the unused tanks would require massive sums, which India is willing to put in, so that they could jointly create a ‘strategic storage’, the kind which could have saved Sri Lanka during last year’s crisis. Needless to say, the nation’s energy security would then hinge on the larger sense of security that it feels, with India putting in the kind of money that would be required for the project.