Sri Lankan PM to visit India in his maiden foreign trip


New Delhi: In his maiden foreign trip after assuming charge as the Sri Lankan Prime Minister, Ranil Wickremesinghe will be to India next week during which he will hold extensive talks with the Indian leadership including on the sensitive fishermen issue and a comprehensive economic pact.

During the three-day visit from September 14 to 16, he will hold talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, besides meeting External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and calling on President Pranab Mukherjee.

Former Lankan president Chandrika Kumaratunga confirmed to journalists Saturday that Wickremesinghe will start a three-day visit to India on September 14. Kumaratunga is in India to participate in a conference on Buddhism organized by the Vivekananda International Foundation in Bodh Gaya.

The two countries have been talking about a CEPA for several years, but Sri Lankan opposition to it stalled its finalisation. India, government sources said, will now be looking to tie up the details with Wickremesinghe’s “national unity government” and work towards finalising the agreement.