Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickermesinghe will be visiting India from April 25 during which he will be finalising details regarding Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to his country next month.During his visit, Wickeremesinghe will meet External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, Minister of Home Affairs Rajnath Singh and Minister of Road Transport and Highways and Shipping Nitin Gadkari.
This will be Prime Minister Modi’s second visit to Sri Lanka since 2014. In 2015, he had inaugurated the reconstructed Northern Province Railway line that linked Jaffna with Colombo.
That was the first prime ministerial visit to Jaffna. The rail line is one of the few developmental projects undertaken by the Indian government in post-conflict Sri Lanka, where China has made deeper inroads.
The contract for construction of the Trincomalee port and conclusion of a Free Trade Agreement are some of the bilateral agreements that have been hanging fire for long and some forward movement is expected during Modi’s visit.
The Indian government has been undertaking large number of development projects in Sri Lanka for rehabilitation and resettlement of conflict-affected and internally displaced people in Tamil-majority Northern and Eastern provinces. India’s total development aid is more than USD 2.6 billion.