Lanka apologises for Modi-Jaya article

Lanka apologises for Modi-Jaya article

India on Friday strongly objected to an article on Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalitha posted on the Sri Lankan defence ministry’s official website, forcing the island nation to remove the write-up and tender an apology.

The article also had with it a graphical portrayal of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Jayalalitha.

The article titled “How meaningful are Jayalalitha’s love letters to Narendra Modi?” appeared on the website www.defence.lk.

Jayalalitha wrote to the prime minister demanding that New Delhi put pressure on Colombo to apologise and remove the write-up along with the graphical portrayal from the website at the earliest.

“The article itself contained certain unwarranted and unfounded comments about the very valid and serious issues that I have consistently been raising relating to the repeated instances of harassment by the Sri Lankan Navy of Indian fishermen from Tamil Nadu fishing in their traditional waters,” she said in the letter.

She pointed out that the article also tries to mischievously create fissures within India’s federal polity, where none exist, through statements like: “Obviously she is attempting to dent the popularity of the Indian prime minister”.

AIADMK MPs raised the issue in both Houses of Parliament.
The Indian High Commission in Colombo took up the matter with the Sri Lankan government and the article was later removed from the website.

The Sri Lankan government extended “an unqualified apology” to the prime minister and chief minister of Tamil Nadu.

“We acted with alacrity. We have achieved our objective and should any further action be required we will certainly consider this and take appropriate action,” said spokesperson to the Ministry of External Affairs, Syed Akbaruddin.

Political parties in Tamil Nadu, including AIADMK’s arch-rival the DMK, Congress, NDA allies such as the MDMK and the PMK, termed the article atrocious.

Burying personal differences, DMK president M Karunanidhi came out in support of her over the issue saying the Centre should treat it as an insult not only to Jayalalitha but also to Modi, interfere and register its strong condemnation.

MDMK leader Vaiko said, “Jayalalitha’s letters to Modi were not mere communication, but her struggle to ensure the welfare of the Sri Lankan Tamils.”

PMK founder Ramadoss said the title of the article degrades Modi and Jayalalitha, and it is not acceptable.

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