to Rameshwaram a reality soon, says Karu
The bridge linking Sri Lanka and India will soon
become a reality, Power and Energy Minister Karu Jayasuriya said.
parliament on Friday, the minister said the 29-kilometre bridge
between Mannar and Rameshwaram in South India would not only link
Sri Lanka with India but also 24 Asian countries covering more than
The Minister said that satellite photos taken by US space agency
NASA had shown that there was evidence of a man made bridge linking
the two sides dating back to several thousand years.
He said the
creation of the bridge would be a great boost to the country with
an increase in trade and tourism between the two neighbours. He
said that essential items such as electricity and gas could be purchased
from each other when the need arose and trade with other countries
would also increase through the land link. He said that when the
bridge was first proposed, it seemed like an impossible dream but
today it was on the verge of becoming a reality.
would be built without taxing the people and the proposals for this
had already been forwarded to the government.
also spoke on the historical links between the two countries stating
that the bridge between the two countries mentioned in the Ramanaya
and the one that King Gajaba travelled to India by parting water
were believed to be between Mannar and Rameshwaram.
Indo-Lanka ship service anchored
The passenger ship service between Sri Lanka and India will
not start this week as earlier announced because the two countries
are yet to sign a memorandum of understanding, The Sunday Times
The draft MoU
had been sent to New Delhi about two weeks ago but the Sri Lankan
government had not received a response yet, sources said.
V Ashok, Economic
and Commerce secretary of the Indian High Commission, said the delay
was due to changes being effected at Tuticorin which was a cargo
port. He said once the necessary modifications were done to handle
passenger arrivals, the MoU would be signed, Mr. Ashok said.
officials here said that even the Colombo Port which could handle
only a few passengers had to be modified to handle a big passenger
flow to and from India. They said the Immigration Department was
setting up new arrival and departure counters in the port to cope
with the heavy traffic.
Technical Manager of Green Lanka Shipping, told The Sunday Times
that they were ready to start the service as soon as the MoU was