NPC wants land, police powers

Indian PM in Jaffna, wants unity

The Northern Provincial Council (NPC) has called for land and police powers to be given to the provinces, similar to the Indian system of devolution.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, during his visit to Sri Lanka, had called for the early and full implementation of the 13th Amendment to the constitution.

However Northern Province Chief Minister C.V. Wigneswaran told Modi today that the 13th Amendment cannot be the final solution.

Speaking at the Jaffna Library this evening during Prime Minister Modi’s visit, Wigneswaran said that Sri Lanka needs a devolution system similar to that seen in India.

“The current 13th Amendment framework and the existing Sri Lankan constitution architecture that had evolved since the first republican constitution of 1972 without the consent and participation of the Tamils of the North and East of our country, poses formidable challenges and hindrances in realizing the quantum of devolution required to fulfill the needs and aspirations of the Tamil speaking people of the North and East of Sri Lanka,” Wigneswaran said.

The Indian constitution, Wigneswaran noted, allows the Indian State’s to manage their own development as well as law and order and land issues but the Northern Province is unable to function in the same manner.

CADPIzBUQAAi_3c-447x300He said that even today parallel administrative structures exist, one directed by the center and the other by the province, despite the appointment of an amiable governor.

Wigneswaran called for talks between the Indian Government, central Government and the Northern Provincial Council and Eastern Provincial Council on the political solution for Tamil speaking people.

During Modi’s Jaffna visit a protest was staged by families of those reported missing and others affected by the war, urging India’s assistance to seek justice.

The protesters had also handed over a petition to the Indian Deputy High Commission in Jaffna to be handed over to Prime Minister Modi.(Colombo Gazette)

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