New Delhi: Plans for a “huge demonstration” against Indian billionaire Gautam Adani’s company are circulating on social media in Sri Lanka, following reports that an energy project was awarded to the group after Prime Minister Narendra Modi put pressure on his counterpart, President Gotabaya Rajapaksa.
According to posters calling for the demonstration, people are asked to congregate “in front of Majestic City,” in Colombo, at 2 pm on June 16.
The controversy erupted after MMC Ferdinando, the chairman of Sri Lanka’s Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB), later resigned, told a parliamentary panel that President Rajapaksa had told him that PM Modi was urging him to give the Adani firm the wind power project immediately. President Rajapaksa has categorically denied the allegation. Mr Ferdinando then reversed his statement.
But a letter exclusively accessed by a leading new channel suggests that the officer, while asking the Lankan Finance Ministry to fast-track approval for the 500-megawatt renewable energy project in Mannar district, cited “directions by the (Lankan) Prime Minister” to recognise the Adani proposal as one from the Indian government to the Lankan government.
The controversy has left the Adani group “disappointed.” “Our investment in Sri Lanka is intended to meet the demands of a valuable neighbour. As a responsible firm, we consider this as an important component of the long-standing connection between our two countries. We are clearly disappointed by the detraction that seems to have come about. “The fact is that the issue has already been addressed by and within the Sri Lankan Government,” said a spokesperson for the group.
India has not responded regarding the setting up of energy project by Adani group in Sri Lanka.