The Indian Central Government cannot give Tamil Nadu political parties veto over its dealings with the Government of Sri Lanka, a leading Indian newspaper said in its editorial today.
The campaign in Tamil Nadu’s political circles to have India boycott the forthcoming Commonwealth meet in Colombo comes as no surprise, the Indian Express said.
“Whether it was over New Delhi’s attempt to negotiate a workable draft of a UN resolution on human rights in Sri Lanka or the participation of Lankan cricketers in domestic cricket, Tamil Nadu’s two largest political parties have been outbidding each other in recommending the more extremist position, never mind its very questionable utility in attaining their stated goal of securing a better political package for the island nation’s Tamil minority.,” the editorial said.
“What surprises is the PM‘s refusal to challenge the rhetoric while assuring Karunanidhi, an erstwhile UPA ally, that any decision will take into account “the sentiments of your party (the DMK) and the Tamil people”, the Indian Express editorial said.
It said that this was not the first time the UPA has apparently given a regional party the veto in the Centre’s dealings with a neighbouring country.
“But in no other context has the UPA been so wary — frightened, even — as it has been on Sri Lanka, of explaining India’s longstanding argument against blanket boycotts and sanctions as effective instruments of forcing democratic change in South Asia. In the time since the final phase of the Sri Lankan military’s fight against the LTTE, Delhi has allowed Tamil political parties to determine the standard for how to engage Colombo — and, more dangerously, to rouse the street,” the newspaper noted.