Thursday, 21 March 2013

Govt fails to get all-party support for parliament resolution on Sri Lanka

The prospect of sending out a collective message from Parliament on the Tamil issue looked set to be a non-starter Wednesday after opposition parties as well as allies refused to back a resolution proposed by the government in the backdrop of the DMK pulling out of the UPA on the issue. Barring the backing of Tamil Nadu parties such as the AIADMK and DMK, the government failed to secure the support of the BJP, Left as well as parties such as the SP for a strongly-worded resolution that virtually sought to pin Sri Lanka for alleged atrocities committed against its ethnic Tamils. "The meeting was inconclusive," Parliamentary Affairs Minister Kamal Nath told reporters after an all-party meeting convened by Lok Sabha speaker Meira Kumar. He said the meeting had been called to end the impasse in Parliament over the Lankan Tamil issue, but "it has not produced any results". The government, however, looked prepared to move amendments to the US-sponsored draft resolution on the issue that is to be taken up before the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva on Friday. Sources said the amendments could be in the nature of getting Colombo to agree to set up an independent investigating agency which meets international approval, to look into the alleged atrocities. This formulation appeared to be a step forward from the US-sponsored draft resolution which calls for an independent and credible investigation. Dilip Sinha, India's permanent representative to the UN in Geneva, will consult the US and other interlocutors who are part of the UNHRC on India's proposal, the sources said. But there is a good chance this may not carry, they added.


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