BJP can't form political entity in Sri Lanka, says country's EC chief

16 Feb 2021

BJP can't form political entity in Sri Lanka, says country's EC chief

Sri Lanka's Election Commission Chairman Nimal Punchihewa on Monday rejected reports of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) intending to set up a political unit in the island country, saying the country's appointive law doesn't allow such a plan.
Any Sri Lankan ideological group or gathering is allowed to have outer connections with any gathering or gathering abroad. However, their constituent laws don't allow abroad ideological groups to work there.
Punchihewa's remarks came after media reports cited Tripura Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb as saying that the BJP is wanting to broaden its impression in Sri Lanka and Nepal.
On Saturday, Deb said that Amit Shah, when serving as BJP president, had told party leaders that the BJP would establish rule in other regional countries as part of 'Atmanirbhar South Asia' initiative. Deb said the BJP deeply valued the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) partnership.
Strangely, a year ago, President Gotabhaya Rajapaksa's sibling, Basil, had said he envisioned modelling the decision Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna either on the lines of the BJP or the Communist Party of China.