Gotabaya Rajapaksa thanks PM Modi for warm wishes on winning Lanka presidential poll

Colombo, Nov 17 (PTI) Gotabaya Rajapaksa, who emerged victorious in Sri Lanka's presidential election, thanked the people of India and Prime Minister Narendra Modi for his warm wishes, saying he looks forward to strengthening the friendship and meeting him in the near future.

Rajapaksa, 70, a controversial wartime defence secretary, is all set to lead Sri Lanka for five years after ruling party candidate Sajith Premadasa conceded the poll, marking the return of the powerful Rajapaksa dynasty.

He will succeed President Maithripala Sirisena who did not seek a second term.

Prime Minister Modi congratulated Rajapaksa for winning the Sri Lankan presidential polls and said he looks forward to further deepen relations between the two nations.

'Congratulations @GotabayaR on your victory in the Presidential elections.I look forward to working closely with you for deepening the close and fraternal ties between our two countries and citizens, and for peace, prosperity as well as security in our region,' Modi tweeted.

Replying to Prime Minister Modi's wishes, Rajapaksa thanked him and said that the two countries are bound by history and common beliefs.

'I thank Prime Minister @narendramodi and the people of India for your warm wishes. Our two nations are bound by history and common beliefs and I look forward to strengthening our friendship and meeting you in the near future,' he said in a tweet. PTI CPS AKJ CPS