India and Sri Lanka have set up Parliamentary Friendship Association, with Minister Chamal Rajapaksa, the eldest brother in Sri Lanka’s ruling clan, as its president.
The association existed in the past and is being revived for the current Parliament, elected in August 2020.
Speaking at an event held at the Parliament complex here, Sri Lanka’s Foreign Minister G.L. Peiris pointed to “close civilisational ties” between India and Sri Lanka, while observing that the “greatest gift” of India to Sri Lanka was Buddhism.
Indian High Commissioner Gopal Baglay said the association would “reinvigorate” Parliamentary exchanges between the two democracies and strengthen bilateral ties.
Opposition parliamentarians Rauff Hakeem, M.A. Sumanthiran and V. Radhakrishnan, respectively representing Sri Lanka’s Muslim, northern Tamil and Malaiyaha (hill country) Tamil minorities , were elected as the vice-presidents of the association, a press release from the Indian High Commission in Colombo said.