Connect with us

NEWS

Sri Lanka Cancels Imran Khan’s Parliament Address to Avoid Risking its Relations With India: Report

Published

on

Sri Lanka has cancelled Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan’s planned speech in Parliament in an apparent bid to avoid clash with India. The Colombo government cannot risk its relations with India as it faces the Chinese debt-trap. India is also the main supplier of COVID-19 vaccines and has recently gifted 5 lakh doses of Covishield to Sri Lanka.

According to a report titled ‘Sri Lanka avoids clash with India by cancelling Khan’s Parliament speech’ by Dar Javed published in Colombo Gazette, the speech was cancelled to prevent souring of relations with India.

Sergeant-at-Arms of Parliament, Narendra Fernando said he has informed Parliament that the Pakistan Prime Minister’s visit to Sri Lanka will go ahead as scheduled, the Colombo Gazette website reported on last Wednesday.

However, the Foreign Ministry had informed Parliament officials that his proposed visit to the Parliament complex will not take place. Pakistan Prime Minister Khan will arrive in Sri Lanka on February 22 on a two-day official state visit.

Khan, who will be the first head of state to visit the country since the COVID-19 pandemic, is to hold talks with President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa and Foreign Minister Dinesh Gunawardena during the visit. It is said that the speech to Parliament had been included in Khan’s itinerary at the Pakistan government’s request. However, it was later cancelled and Sri Lankan media gave various reasons for the cancellation of Khan’s address, Pakistan’s Dawn newspaper reported on Thursday.

The address was scheduled for February 24. According to Sri Lanka’s daily Express, Foreign Secretary Jayanath Colombage said that Speaker Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena had requested for the cancellation of Khan’s address, citing COVID-19.

Dawn newspaper quoting Sri Lankan media reports that there were elements within the Sri Lankan government, who did not want the speech to take place as they feared that doing so could further harm ties with India, which have already been strained after the cancellation of a deal over the East Container Terminal in Colombo port, Dawn newspaper said.

It was expected that Khan would raise the Kashmir issue during his speech, which could have upset Delhi, it said. Tensions between India and Pakistan spiked after New Delhi abrogated provisions of Article 370 of the Constitution to withdraw Jammu and Kashmir”s special status and bifurcated it into two Union Territories in 2019.

Pakistan has been trying to internationalise the Kashmir issue but India has asserted that the abrogation of Article 370 was its “internal matter”.

Another speculation doing the rounds is that the Sri Lankan government was concerned about Khan speaking about the rights of Muslims in Sri Lanka, who have faced abuses at the hands of Buddhist majority, rising anti-Muslim sentiments, and biased government actions.

The Sri Lankan government had made compulsory cremation rule for those dying from COVID-19, enraging the Muslim community in the country. The government, however, earlier this month exempted the Muslims from cremation and allowed them to bury their dead after a global outcry over the issue.

Khan had welcomed the Sri Lankan government’s decision. The Pakistan Prime Minister’s visit, scheduled a month after Indian External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar’s three-day visit to Colombo, will coincide with the 46th UN Human Rights Council session in Geneva, where a new resolution on Sri Lanka is likely to be adopted. Prime Minister Narendra Modi had addressed Sri Lanka’s Parliament in 2015.

(With PTI inputs)

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Politics News

‘Blackmailers also come to this court’: Delhi HC pulls up petitioner over frivolous PIL

Published

on


Courts in India are often burdened with frivolous petitions by litigants who would seek judicial recourse for each and everything under the sun. Over time, the courts have come down hard against such litigants and have even imposed financial penalties to refrain them from filing such petitions. Recently, one such petitioner who filed a petition in Delhi High Court on anticipated water supply shortage in Delhi withdrew his plea after the court questioned his locus standi in the case.

When the petitioner was unable to answer the questions raised by the Delhi Court, he offered to withdraw the plea. To this, the court said, “Yes you better withdraw it, warna jo kaam karte ho woh bhi bandh ho jayega.”

The petitioner had filed a plea seeking the court to direct the state of Himachal Pradesh to release water through Western Yamuna Canal on the basis of MOU dated 20.12.2019 HP & GNCTD, and order Haryana to facilitate this water to reach Delhi.

However, the court slammed the petitioner, asking him in what capacity has he filed the case and if he is smarter than the high ranking officials in the states who are looking into the matter.

“Who are you? In the eyes of law, who are you? You want directions to these states.. but the governments, high ranking officials are all looking into it, are you smarter than all of them? Are you the custodian of the state of Delhi?’ the bench of Chief Justice Patel and Justice Singh asked.

The court sought livelihood and bank details from the petitioner, stating that many times blackmailers approach the court.

The petitioner, in turn, responded that he is a ‘professor’ and has done work with ‘baulis’ around Delhi. The court further pressed the petitioner to reveal if he serves as a professor anywhere.

However, by now, the petitioner had developed cold feet and he expressed his desire to no longer pursue the petition any further. The petitioner asked, “Allow me to withdraw the petition”, to which the court responded: “Yes you better withdraw it, warna jo kaam karte ho woh bhi bandh ho jayega(You better withdraw it, or else what you work will also stop)”.

Delhi High Court’s Chief Justice Patel and Justice Singh held a discussion over it and decide not to impose any cost on the petitioners. “All the three states have Water Departments and experts who will handle this better than you. You’re not a super-government,” CJ Patel said after which the petition was unconditionally withdrawn.



Continue Reading
Advertisement "Pages & Posts Ads Section"

Recent Posts

Trending

%d bloggers like this: