Oct 27, Colombo: India's External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid has affirmed that he will represent India at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in Colombo next month.
In a television interview with Times Now of India Mr. Khurshid has confirmed his participation in the summit despite the passage of a unanimous resolution by the Tamil Nadu government calling for India's complete boycott of the summit in Sri Lanka.
"I can only speak for myself.... I can say I will be there. I'll be there with a clear message we have given to Sri Lanka that it's important to us that commitment that India received from Sri Lanka on the devolution of powers to the Northern Province..." Mr. Khurshid said.
However, Mr. Khurshid has not revealed who will lead the Indian delegation or who will be in the delegation to Colombo.
When asked whether the Prime Minister Manmohan Singh would go to Colombo, he said a decision would be taken at the right time.
India's leading daily The Hindu quoting government sources said India will not follow Canada which will not send a senior delegation to the summit on the grounds that Sri Lanka has not done enough to address war time human rights violations.
Pointing out that the Commonwealth summit is a multilateral forum not a bilateral meeting with Sri Lanka, Mr. Khurshid has said that by not engaging with Sri Lanka, India will be losing out.
"Even if it means raising...the Tamil fishermen issue. How can India do it without engaging?" the Minister was quoted as asking.
During his two-day visit to the island earlier this month, Mr. Khurshid assured India's firm commitment to assist people of Sri Lanka in the processes of rehabilitation and reconstruction.
"India remains committed to uplifting the lives of the people of the Northern Province through its efforts to restore the social, educational, economic and cultural infrastructure, which were devastated by the armed conflict," Minister Khurshid said when he visited Jaffna.