We expect more help from India to develop Tamil areas: Lankan minister

Last Updated: Sun, Jan 02, 2011 11:36 hrs

Keelakarai: A Sri Lankan minister today said the country expected more help from India to develop war-ravaged areas in northern Lanka, dominated by minority Tamils.

"The nation expects more help from India for developing the Tamil areas. A cordial atmosphere now prevails in relations between Tamil Nadu Chief Minister (M Karunanidhi), Indian Prime Minister (Dr Manmohan Singh) and Sri Lankan President (Mahinda Rajapakse). Tamils will once again develop and join the mainstream," minister A H M Fowzie said here.

"Sri Lanka will not act against India at the instigation of any country," he said without elaborating on the statement.

Fowzie claimed that absolute peace prevailed in Sri Lanka and that India had offered to build 50,000 houses for Tamils.

He was speaking at the marriage of a relative of Lankan Western Provincial governor Syed Alavi Mowlana.

Mowlana said the Sri Lankan government and Tamils had forgotten the past and are now looking to a good future.

"The past is past. Let what is going to happen be good," he said.

He said Singh and Rajapakse shared a good understanding best reflected in the fact that the latter was implementing "various suggestions for the welfare and rehabilitation of Tamils," he said.

On attacks on Indian fishermen allegedly by Lankan naval personnel, he said Rajapakse has drawn up various plans to put an end to such incidents.

"As of now good relationship prevails between Indian and Sri Lankan governments as also Tamil Nadu and no force can split this unity," he said.

The proposed ferry service between India and Sri Lanka will further strengthen the bond between the two nations, the governor said.