Colombo, August 7 (newsin.asia): The Indian High Commissioner in Sri Lanka, Taranjit Singh Sandhu, stressed the “substantial” advantages that Sri Lanka will have if it links up with India, which is the sixth largest and the fastest growing major economy in the world today.
Addressing the Sri Lanka-India Society (SLIS) at a function here to mark India’s Independence Day and the SLIS’s Platinum Jubilee on August 5, 2018, the envoy said that India– Sri Lanka relations should look towards opportunities waiting to be exploited..
He said that Sri Lankan youth could fulfill their aspirations by becoming part of India’s growth story.
The High Commissioner said that India and Sri Lanka have jointly executed various people – oriented development projects undertaken. These have had a direct impact on the lives of common people. In this context he cited the Indian Housing Project and the Emergency Ambulance Service – the nationwide expansion of which was recently launched.
High Commissioner Sandhu stressed that India has also done close to 70 people-oriented small development projects across all the provinces of Sri Lanka.
Around 20 such projects, including construction of rainwater harvesting units, construction of toilets, upgrading and constructing schools such as the tri-lingual school in Polonnaruwa, and providing infrastructure facilities for universities including a 1500 seat auditorium in Ruhuna University in Matara are currently underway.
The envoy emphasized that India’s development partnership is not limited to one sector or area but encompasses a wide variety of sectors and was spread across the island.
He added that it is heartening to note that India has been able to fulfill its promises in time.
High Commissioner Sandhu pointed out that as democracies which are mandated by the will of the people to fulfill their aspirations, India and Sri Lanka have the responsibility to make the developmental journey as smooth, fast and comfortable as possible.
Not just the governments on both sides, but industry, academia, the youth, and civil society have an important role to play in shaping the future of India-Sri Lanka relations.
During the event, the past Presidents of the Sri Lanka-India Society were felicitated. The event concluded with a musical performance by the Oriental Choir of Colombo and a fellowship dinner.
Among those present were the State Minister for Foreign Affairs Vasantha Senanayake, the Mayor of Colombo Ms. Rosy Senanayake, the Attorney General Jayantha Jayasuriya, President of SLIS T.S. Prakash.
The SLIS was founded in 1949, soon after the independence of India and Sri Lanka. SLIS is the oldest and largest friendship society in Sri Lanka.
(The featured image at the top shows Indian High Commissioner, Taranjit Singh Sandhu, being received at the Sri Lanka India Society Platinum Jubilee function)