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S. A. M. Muhajireen asked : What is the current status of India-Sri Lanka relations especially in reference to the growing Chinese influence in Sri Lanka?

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  • Gulbin Sultana replies: Growing Chinese influence in Sri Lanka is often viewed with concern by a section of security analysts in India. There is a view that on several occasions the Sri Lankan Government had tried to play the China card against India. However, India in its own subtle way has conveyed to Sri Lanka not to allow any external force to use its territory against India. Sri Lanka also understands that given the geographic proximity, cultural linkages, people-to-people contact and economic ties, it cannot afford to ignore India’s interests and concerns.

    Though there are differences of opinion on the issue of fishermen, signing of Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) and the implementation of the 13th Amendment, but all such issues of concern in the bilateral relations are influenced more by domestic factors in both the countries. Therefore, it will not be appropriate to say that growing Chinese presence in Sri Lanka has influenced the bilateral relations in any notable manner.

    Posted on May 16, 2014