Raising Lanka,DMK seeks amendments to Patil speech

In fresh ally trouble for the UPA,the DMK has asked the Centre to support a US-backed resolution on Sri Lanka at the coming session of the United Nations Human Rights Council

Written by Manoj C G | New Delhi | Published: March 13, 2012 3:37:41 am

In fresh ally trouble for the UPA,the DMK has asked the Centre to support a US-backed resolution on Sri Lanka at the coming session of the United Nations Human Rights Council.

Supporting any resolution condemning Colombo on the human rights front would signal a paradigm shift in India’s foreign policy position because of its principled stand that it would not vote for country-specific resolutions. India takes a position only on issue-based resolutions.

While voting on the resolution is more than a week away,the DMK upped the ante as it moved amendments to the President’s address for remaining silent on the government’s position on the resolution at the UNHRC and attacks on Indian fishermen allegedly by Lankan forces.

It is rare for a party in ruling coalition to move amendments to the President’s address,which is cleared by the Cabinet,where the DMK is represented by M K Alagiri.

DMK leader T R Baalu said his party would take a “hard stand” on the Lankan Tamil issue. Alleging the government was not concerned with “Tamil lives”,Baalu said the President’s address had completely ignored the proposed resolution and the killing of Tamil fishermen by Lankan forces.

He refused to spell out how far his party would go if the government abstains or votes in favour of Colombo but sources in the party said the DMK cannot be expected to remain silent as the plight of Tamils in Lanka has always been a subject of competitive politics between AIADMK and the DMK.

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa has already written to the Prime Minister arguing that direct support to the Sri Lankan government would be most unfortunate and untenable.

Baalu pointed out that all parties in Tamil Nadu were in favour of the resolution,hinting that the government cannot dilute its position because there is domestic pressure.

The government is expected to reach out to the DMK in the coming days. The text of the resolution has not been finalised yet.

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