The government yesterday refused to answer a question raised by the Opposition regarding arms India purchased from Sri Lanka, claiming that the issue would have an impact on the on-going Indian parliamentary elections.
UNP Ratnapura District MP Thalatha Atukorale asked the Prime Minister and Minister of Buddha Sasana to brief the House regarding arms purchases following a statement made by the Indian Minister of Defence in the Lok Sabha. MP Atukorala wanted to know when that transaction had taken place, the types of weapons purchased by India, the income earned by Sri Lanka and whether the deal had been carried out in a transparent manner.Chief Government Whip Water Supply Minister Dinesh Gunawardena, responding on behalf of the Prime Minister, asked for two months to answer MP Atukorale’s question.
When MP Atuokrale protested, demanding a prompt answer as it was apparent that the minister had been provided with the relevant documents, Gunawardena said that the government would respond to the question after the conclusion of the Indian polls.
The MP remarked that the government’s answer would have no effect on the Indian elections. The minister said: “The effect could be seen once the answer is given.”