Skip to main content

India, Sri Lanka mull resuming ferry services

External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on Saturday discussed with her Sri Lankan counterpart Mangala Samaraweera the possibility of resuming ferry services between the two countries.
However, the Foreign Ministers did not discuss the fisheries issue. “Not a word about it,” Sri Lankan Foreign Minister told The Hindu soon after his meeting with Ms. Swaraj, but officials said the subject was likely to be discussed at her lunch meeting with Sri Lanka Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe.
In addition to discussing agreements to be inked during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s upcoming visit,
the leaders discussed the possible resumption of ferry services in detail. India and Sri Lanka are very keen to resume the services at the earliest, Sri Lankan Foreign Ministry spokesman A.M.J. Sadiq told reporters after the bilateral meeting between the Ministers Friday morning.
The service between Colombo and Tuticorin was operational in 2011 but had to be suspended as it was not found to be commercially viable. The ferry service between Rameswaram and Thalaimannar came to a halt in the 1980s, during the war. “The piers at both sides have to be repaired before resumption of the service,” he said.
Political developments
Mr. Samaraweera briefed the Indian delegeation on the political developments and the newly formed government’s progress on its 100 day programme, officials said. He also outlined the electoral reforms being considered by the government.
The Sri Lankan Foreign Minister emphasised the new government’s commitment to addressing the Tamil question, pointing to President Maithripala Sirisena’s winning mandate that included a substantial share of minority votes. Mr. Samaraweera said the new government would meet the aspirations of the minority communities. “He [the Minister] said the new government owed it to the minority communities,” Mr. Sadiq said.
Minister Swaraj arrived on Thursday on a two-day visit and called on President Sirisena. Following her meeting with the Prime Minister, Ms. Swaraj is scheduled to meet senior leaders of various political parties representing the Tamil and Muslim minorities.

Popular posts from this blog

Cloud seeding

Demonstrating the function of the flare rack that carries silver iodide for cloud-seeding through an aircraft. 
Water is essential for life on the earth. Precipitation from the skies is the only source for it. India and the rest of Asia are dependent on the monsoons for rains. While the South West Monsoon is the main source for India as a whole, Tamil Nadu and coastal areas of South Andhra Pradesh get the benefit of the North East Monsoon, which is just a less dependable beat on the reversal of the South West Monsoon winds.

SC asks Centre to strike a balance on Rohingya issue (.hindu)

Supreme Court orally indicates that the government should not deport Rohingya “now” as the Centre prevails over it to not record any such views in its formal order, citing “international ramifications”.

The Supreme Court on Friday came close to ordering the government not to deport the Rohingya.

It finally settled on merely observing that a balance should be struck between humanitarian concern for the community and the country's national security and economic interests.

The court was hearing a bunch of petitions, one filed by persons within the Rohingya community, against a proposed move to deport over 40,000 Rohingya refugees. A three-judge Bench, led by Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra, began by orally indicating that the government should not deport Rohingya “now”, but the government prevailed on the court to not pass any formal order, citing “international ramifications”. With this, the status quo continues even though the court gave the community liberty to approach it in …

India’s criminal wastage: over 10 million works under MGNREGA incomplete or abandoned (hindu)

In the last three and half years, the rate of work completion under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) has drastically declined, leading to wastage of public money and leaving villages more prone to drought. This could also be a reason for people moving out of the programme.

At a time when more than one-third of India’s districts are reeling under a drought-like situation due to deficit rainfall, here comes another bad news. The works started under the MGNREGA—close to 80 per cent related to water conservation, irrigation and land development—are increasingly not being completed or in practice, abandoned.

Going by the data (as on October 12) in the Ministry of Rural Development’s website, which tracks progress of MGNREGA through a comprehensive MIS, 10.4 million works have not been completed since April 2014. In the last three and half years, 39.7 million works were started under the programme. Going by the stipulation under the programme, close to 7…