Slamming the Centre’s decision to participate in the Commonwealth Summit in Colombo “ignoring” the sentiments of Tamils,Chief Minister Jayalalithaa on Tuesday moved a resolution in a special session of the state assembly demanding India’s “complete boycott” of the meet.
Piloting the resolution,Jayalalithaa hit out at the UPA government charging that India’s participation would give an impression that it was endorsing the “inhuman” deeds of Sri Lankan government (against ethinic Tamils) “whose sufferings continued even four years after the end of the war.”
“In this situation,India’s participation would amount to defending the war criminals,” she claimed adding the country would have to be “guilty” of facilitating the Sri Lankan President in holding the post of “Chair-in-office of Commonwealth” grouping for the next two years.
Targeting the Prime Minister who chose to skip the meet but decided to depute External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid-led delegation to Colombo,she said “it is no way a consolation to Tamils or respecting their sentiments” and recalled the state’s demand for complete boycott.
In the last ten years,out of the 10 CHOGM,the Prime Minister had not attended five of them.
“Hence the Centre’s present decision can only be seen as a routine one and neither giving any consolation to the Tamils
nor respecting their sentiments,” she said in apparent attack on her bete noir DMK chief M Karunanidhi who had termed the Prime Minister’s decision not to attend the meet as ‘some consolation’.
Urging the members to pass the “historically important” resolution unanimously,she recalled that in the two and half years since AIADMK came to power,three resolutions on the Sri Lankan Tamils issue had been passed in the assembly reflecting the sentiments of the people but the Centre had not taken any decision that was “favourbale” to Tamils.
The resolution read: “Respecting the sentiments and feeling of Tamils,even for namesake,none should represent India in the Commonwealth Summit. This House again demands of the Indian government that the country should boycott completely this CHOGM.”
The resolution noted that the unanimous resolution passed by the House on October 24 demanded that India boycott completely the CHOGM and communicate its decision immediately to Sri Lanka.
It also said the assembly had urged the Centre to take steps to get Sri Lanka suspended from Commonwealth till it took action to ensure that Sri Lankan Tamils were given equal rights on par with Sinhalese and were able to live independently.
“But in total contradiction to these demands,the Centre has announced that an Indian delegation led by External Affairs Minister would attend the CHOGM. The assembly expresses its deep regret to this. The Centre’s decision,which does not console the Tamils and respect their sentiments is an act of causing deep pain,” the resolution read.
Jayalalithaa said the Centre’s decision caused “deep regret” to the people of Tamil Nadu.