Colombo relieved at TN’s ‘reduced’ role

Modi’s majority has ensured that even if Jayalalithaa had got all 39 seats, it would have been less significant: Sri Lanka Minister

May 20, 2014 05:32 am | Updated November 16, 2021 06:56 pm IST - COLOMBO

Much of Sri Lanka’s evident joy about BJP leader Narendra Modi’s massive victory seems related to Tamil Nadu’s “reduced” role in national politics henceforth.

Referring to Tamil Nadu’s perceived interference in India’s policy with the island, Sri Lankan Media and Inforamation Minsiter and Cabinet spokesperson Keheliya Rambukwella on Monday expressed happiness over the BJP winning a majority in Parliament. Sri Lanka, has for long, believed that Tamil Nadu politicians were dictating India’s diplomacy with Sri Lanka and the BJP’s massive mandate is being read in that context.

Asked what his government thought of Tamil Nadu Chief Minister’s Jayalalithaa’s huge victory in Tamil Nadu and her possible intervention in New Delhi, he said: “Even if the honourable Ms. Jayalalithaa had got all 39 seats in her State, it is less significant now.”

‘Charismatic leader’ The interaction between the two countries, he said, would henceforth be “Mahinda-Modi” rather than “Mahinda-Modi, Jayalalithaa or Karunanidhi.” “Modi is a charismatic leader, he would want cordial relations with all parties, including those in Tamil Nadu. This is only the beginning, let us see.”

Likening Prime Minister-designate Mr. Modi to President Mahinda Rajapaksa, Mr. Rambukwella said both leaders were very strong and straightforward. “Even in the thinking pattern of both leaders, there is some similarity.”

Minister Rambukwella is not the first to make this now oft-heard ‘Modi-Mahinda’ comparison. Economic Development Minister Basil Rajapaksa — the President’s brother — said “Asia has produced another Rajapaksa and doer.”

Top News Today

Sign in to unlock member-only benefits!
  • Access 10 free stories every month
  • Save stories to read later
  • Access to comment on every story
  • Sign-up/manage your newsletter subscriptions with a single click
  • Get notified by email for early access to discounts & offers on our products
Sign in


Comments have to be in English, and in full sentences. They cannot be abusive or personal. Please abide by our community guidelines for posting your comments.

We have migrated to a new commenting platform. If you are already a registered user of The Hindu and logged in, you may continue to engage with our articles. If you do not have an account please register and login to post comments. Users can access their older comments by logging into their accounts on Vuukle.