India insists it will respect agreement with Sri Lanka on island

Pon RadhakrishnanThe Indian Government says it will respect the deal with Sri Lanka on the Katchatheevu island.

India’s Union Minister of State for Road Transport, Highways, Shipping, Pon Radhakrishnan said that the BJP never wanted to see even an inch of land belonging to the country going into the hands of others.

“But at the same time, Union Government will have to respect the Treaty existing on the Katchatheevu which was signed about 40 years ago during Congress regime at the Centre and DMK in the State.If the people who signed the treaty and those who supported it have listened to the protests then made by Bharatiya Jana Sangh under the leadership of Atal Bihari Vajpayee against the ceding of any land, the issue of Katchatheevu will not have arisen now,” he said, according to The Hindu newspaper.

The Minister added that the Government, however, would not sit quiet rather look for appropriate steps if Sri Lanka went against the interest of Indians.

Mr. Radhakrishnan was responding to the queries of reporters on the sidelines of the programme held to induct around 110 Gandhiya Makkal Iyakkam activists into BJP on Tuesday.

The Minister ridiculed the ornamental concerns raised by many people regarding the Katchadeevu issue.

On the day, around 110 members of Gandhiya Makkal Iyakkam, including 27 office-bearers at the State and district levels, were given primary membership of the BJP.A. S. Krishnamoorthy, who was the State deputy secretary of Gandhiya Makkal Iyakkam, told The Hindu that they joined the BJP as their leader Tamilaruvi Manian had decided to stay away from political activities.

“Mr. Manian is still our political guru. With his blessings we all decided to continue with our political activities by joining BJP. The choice of BJP was made as it is the best party when it comes to patriotism and people welfare,” said Leo Joseph who was district secretary (Tirupur North) of Gandhiya Makkal Iyakkam. (Colombo Gazette)