Author: N Sathiya Moorthy
ISBN/UPC (if available): 8187374589
The relationship between the two democracies Sri Lanka and India has been largely defined in the recent past by domestic political compulsions, and a peculiar lack of understanding of each other’s priorities and positions on specific issues leading to misgivings and dilemmas. The emergence of coalition politics at the national level, and the increasing influences of local interest groups on foreign policy formulations, in both the countries over the past two decades have infused extra dimensions to the relationship. Thus it has become imperative to study issues of bilateral concern in a broader regional framework without ignoring the trials and tribulations of domestic politics in both the countries.
Written by a seasoned analyst, this book makes a modest attempt to sift through complexities of relationship in a region that is undergoing swift and sweeping changes. It documents the evolving dynamics of India-Sri Lanka relationship to draw valuable lessons for South Asia as a whole. The India-Sri Lanka Free Trade Agreement, for instance, is a model worthy of emulation for India’s economic relationship with other countries in the region.
The book explores several other issues of common interest. India can provide a workable solution to ethnic strife while Sri Lanka can offer lessons in health care delivery and education. Early Sri Lankan engagement with market economy and globalization can benefit India’s Journey towards inclusive growth.
More critical, the book argues, is the shared vision of a secure Indian Ocean neighborhood. Sri Lanka has become the first line of defence for India. Security of Indian Ocean is as important to India as the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the island nation.
There has never been such an urgency to work together for the common good of the people of the region as the present. Understanding India Sir Lanka relations in its entirety is only a beginning in that direction.
“Sathiya Moorthy writes great understanding and objectivity on the background to Sri Lanka’s ongoing crises, and India’s dilemma. The tragedy in Sri Lanka has obvious repercussions in neighboring Tamil Nadu, but the implications extend beyond that. Sri Lanka’s strategic geopolitical location compels India to view with some active role in ending the crises is often urged by sir Lanka’s political parties and even on behalf of the LTTE. Its reluctance to have a higher profile is understandable, given its ill=-fated military intervention on invitation of the Sri Lankan government in the late 1980s, the hand of the LTTE in Rajiv Gandhi’s assassination, and other factors. Yet India’s concerns are real, its leverages are undeniable and its support in one form or another for any peace process to succeed, indispensable”.
Walking the Strait
Shared Strategic Concerns
The Indian Dilemma
The ‘Tamil Nadu Factor’
Working the ‘Indian Model’
We, the People
India and Sri Lanka: A Diary of Major Developments