Protest in Delhi against Rajapaksa's India visit

Last Updated: Fri, Feb 08, 2013 06:50 hrs

New Delhi, Feb 8 (IANS) MDMK general secretary Vaiko Friday led a protest in the national capital against Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa's India visit.

Holding placards demanding "Strict action against Rajapaksa' and shouting slogans against the president, Vaiko along with several party members protested on Parliament Street in central Delhi.

The group demanded that Rajapaksa should not be allowed in India as he had ruled out autonomy for Tamil areas in the island nation.

Rajapaksa arrives Friday in India for a brief visit that will take him to Bodh Gaya in Bihar and Tirupati in Andhra Pradesh. He returns to Colombo Saturday.

Termed a "personal visit", the president is avoiding New Delhi despite Sri Lankan concerns over how India will vote in the upcoming UN human rights meet in Geneva.

Last year, India voted for a US-sponsored resolution urging Sri Lanka to go for reconciliation and speedily rehabilitate those derailed by the long running ethnic conflict that ended in May 2009.

The Sri Lankan president has been quoted as saying that he is opposed to granting autonomy to provinces, remarks that are widely seen as going back on promises made earlier to Indian leaders.

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