While the editorial “Sri Lankan denouement” (Jan. 28) captured the mood of the Sri Lankan people in the just-concluded presidential election in that country, the article “A resounding but fractured verdict” (Jan. 29) provided an insightful analysis. The people of Sri Lanka have, in no uncertain terms, given a verdict favouring President Mahinda Rajapaksa keeping in mind the need for an astute leader who can ensure lasting peace and stability. Thus they convincingly rejected as tomfoolery the opportunistic alliance of the opposition that fielded General Sarath Fonseka. The President should work towards creating a climate that is conducive for bridging the ethnic divide.
The vote for Mr. Rajapaksa is a referendum for peace in Sri Lanka. Therefore, it is incumbent on the President to win over the Tamils to his fold by extending the healing touch to the war-weary people. He should address their legitimate grievances. It is his responsibility to usher in permanent peace in the war-ravaged island nation.
Mr. Rajapaksa’s greatest contribution to the island nation is peace, which he achieved by eliminating the LTTE. Now that he has won a thumping victory for a second term, he should direct his energies towards achieving permanent peace and ensuring that the Tamils are treated as equal citizens.
B. Raghavendra Rao,
Mr. Rajapaksa put an end to the decades-old ethnic conflict. The urgent need of the hour is to establish harmony between the Sinhalese majority and the Tamils. Press freedom should be restored and the potential for tourism tapped.