Sunday, November 15, 2009

Fonseka's claim without substance: Tharoor

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: India on Saturday dismissed former Sri Lankan Chief of Defence Staff Sarath Fonseka's claim that its troops were put on alert at the instance of President Mahinda Rajapaksa following fears of a coup.

Strongly refuting Fonseka's claim, Minister of state for External Affairs Shashi Tharoor said there was "no substance to the story."
"We should be a little wary of making too much of these kinds of speculations," he told reporters here.

The Ministry of External Affairs made it very clear that the Indian Army was never placed on alert. "There is no substance to the story. The government has officially informed the public that the Indian Army has not been placed on alert."

In his resignation letter, Fonseka has claimed that fears of the possibility of him launching a coup had led President Mahinda Rajapaksa to sideline him and ask India to put its troops on alert for an intervention.

Fonseka said in the letter that the Sri Lankan government had asked neighbouring India on October 15 to place its troops on alert to be deployed on the island in the event of a coup.

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