Sri Lanka tenders unqualified apology to Modi and Jayalalithaa for derogatory article

NEW DELHI: The Sri Lankan government has tendered an "unqualified apology" to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa for a controversial article on the two leaders on its defence ministry’s official website.

The Sri Lankan government said in a statement that the article was published "without proper authorization and it doesn't reflect the government's official position."

A statement posted on the Lankan Defence Ministry website said: “An article titled 'How meaningful are Jayalalitha's love letters to Narendra Modi?' had appeared on our website along with a graphical portrayal of Hon. Prime Minister of India and Hon Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu.

The article which had been published without appropriate authorization and not reflecting any official position of the Government of Sri Lanka or Ministry of Defence and Urban Development has since been removed.

We extend an unqualified apology to the Hon Prime Minister of India and Hon Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu.”

The opinion article written by Shenali.D. Waduge starts with "Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned they say and that aptly puts to context the feelings of Jayalalithaa towards Sri Lanka."

"But, the BJP high powered delegation led by Dr. Subramaniam Swamy who arrived in Sri Lanka at the invitation of the Bandaranaike Centre for International Studies recently made explicitly clear that Tamil Nadu would not come between Indo-Lanka relations and also thanked the Sri Lankan president for arresting but releasing the Indian fishermen while confiscating the boats," the article said.

According to the author, the boundary line between India and Sri Lanka is a settled issue and the Tamil Nadu government should look at alternative ways to secure the livelihood of its fishermen following its marine bed destroyed due to bottom trawling.

In the article, Waduge writes that Jayalalithaa is "attempting to dent the popularity of the Indian prime minister while also disturb the amity that is being built between the two nations".

"Her actions are obviously aligned to the undiplomatic and unscrupulous policies followed by the Sonia-led Congress government where the central government of India was virtually kept strangulated and on a noose by successive Tamil Nadu governments."

"Tamil Nadu Chief Minister may learn sooner than later that Narendra Modi is not a puppet to dance to her tantrums or threats," the author said.