Colombo, March 19 (newsin.asia): The Indian Deputy High Commissioner, Vinod K. Jacob, undertook a two day visit to the Southern Province of Sri Lanka from March 17 to 18, accompanied by the ndian Consul General in Hambantota, P R Dipin, participated in the engagements, the Indian High Commission said on Friday.
During his visit, the Deputy High Commissioner offered prayers at Kataragama temple, paid his respects to Chief incumbents of Kirivehera Raja Maha Viharaya and the Abhinawaramaya Buddhist temple.
He also held substantive discussions with the Basnayake Nilame of the Kataragama temple, Dishan Gunasekara, and briefed him about the USD 15 million grant announced by the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi during the Virtual Bilateral Summit on September 26, 2020 for promotion of Buddhist ties between India and Sri Lanka.
The Deputy High Commissioner noted that this is a first of its kind grant announcement by India and stated that the High Commission of India and the Ministry of Buddhasasana, Religious and Cultural Affairs are currently working together to finalize various projects to utilize this grant.
On March 17, the Deputy High Commissioner met Dr. Willie Gamage, Governor of the Southern Province at the Governor’s Secretariat and discussed India- Sri Lanka cooperation in the past year in various sectors like development cooperation, technical cooperation, health, education and other areas.
He also visited the Rabindranath Tagore Memorial auditorium at the University of Ruhuna, Matara which was built with Indian grant assistance and had a fruitful discussion with Prof. Sujeewa Amarasena, Vice Chancellor of the University of Ruhuna.
During the visit, Deputy High Commissioner Jacob also met separately with Cmde. U.V.M.P. Perera, South Area Commander of the Sri Lanka Navy at SLNS Dakshina and R.C De Zoysa, Chief Secretary of the Southern Province at the Southern Provincial Chief Secretariat. He reviewed the progress of the Indian Housing Project in the Southern Province and visited the Shilpa Kala site constructed with Indian grant assistance at Tissamaharama.