Bridge across Palk Strait:
PM candidates urged to reveal stand before polls


by Maheesha Mudugamuwa

The Federation of National Organisations (FNO) yesterday urged UPFA Prime Ministerial Candidate former President Mahinda Rajapaksa and UNP Colombo District candidate Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe to reveal their positions on the proposed bridge across Palk-Strait linking India and Sri Lanka.

Addressing a press conference at the Abayaramaya Temple in Narahenpita, FNO Co-Chairman Dr. Gunadasa Amarasekara said that the prime ministerial candidates of the two main parties should make their positions known before the parliamentary elections on August 17.

According to Amarasekara a bridge across the Palk Strait connecting Tamil Nadu with Northern Sri Lanka was proposed by Ranil Wickremesinghe when he was the Prime Minister in 2002.

That was definitely a biggest challenge Sri Lanka would face in the future as the bridge building would heavily damage the territorial integrity of Sri Lanka, Amarasekara said adding that some powers were trying to annex Sri Lanka to India through the bridge.

The FNO stressed that if the bridge was built, Sri Lanka could be no longer called a separate country or an island as it would become a part of India.

India had already started the initial work on the project, Amarasekera said.

Indian media reports say that the proposal for providing road and rail link bridging across Palk Strait have been submitted to the Asian Development Bank (ADB) for a pre-feasibility study and subsequent financing.

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