Kicking off his visit to India, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe yesterday met Indian National Congress President Rahul Gandhi for discussions on the political and economic situation of the region, the Prime Minister’s Office said in a statement.
The discussions also centred on how to safeguard navigation in the Indian Ocean and Sri Lanka’s welfare system. Several Congress officials, including Sonia Gandhi, Anand Sharma, and Dr. Manmohan Singh, were also present at the meeting.
The officials on both sides also talked of the emerging importance of Asia as a global powerhouse and how South Asian nations could benefit from this growth, as well as how the future of Asian countries would be shaped by these changes. Tackling extremism in South Asia was also a topic of conversation. Prime Minister Wickremesinghe extended an invitation to Congress President Rahul Gandhi and other top officials to visit Sri Lanka. The invitation was accepted.
Today, the Premier is scheduled to meet Indian Home Minister Rajnath Singh and External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj.
The Sri Lankan Prime Minister will meet his Indian counterpart, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, this afternoon at Hyderabad House.
The two Prime Ministers are likely to review the status of the India-assisted housing projects in Jaffna and deliberate on the Tamil issue, the reconciliation process and devolution of powers in Tamil-dominated areas.
Ministers Sagala Ratnayake, Malik Samarawickrama, and Arjuna Ranatunga are accompanying Prime Minister Wickremesinghe.