Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said peace and stability play a major role in the success of India and Sri Lanka even as he welcomed Sri Lankan counterpart Ranil Wickremesinghe in New Delhi on Tuesday.
"Peace and stability in the region is key to our success. When there is stability we prosper," Modi said while addressing a joint press meeting with Wickremesinghe, according to a PMO tweet.
Wickremesinghe arrived in New Delhi on Monday for a three-day visit to India, which is his maiden overseas trip after assuming office in August this year.
"We are deeply honoured that you have chosen India as your first overseas destination. It is a happy coincidence that your last full term as Sri Lanka's Prime Minister coincided with the first NDA Government," Modi said.
"We thank you for your belief in and steadfast support for India-Sri Lanka relations. You are a deeply valued friend, whose vision for Sri Lanka's progress and commitment to its pursuit is greatly admired in India," he added.
Modi further assured Sri Lanka of support from India for development of both the Sri Lankans and the Sri Lankan Tamil community. He even praised the Sri Lankan government for making efforts to show remarkable political unity.
"As a close neighbour and friend, we wish Sri Lanka every success; rejoice in your progress; and, assure you of India's unwavering support. So, we are pleased that the Government of Sri Lanka has taken a number of significant steps in recent times. The leadership has shown remarkable political unity, at a time of great hope," Modi said.
"I am confident that with the wisdom and will of the leadership in Sri Lanka and the support of the people, Sri Lanka will achieve genuine reconciliation and development, so that all Sri Lankans, including the Sri Lankan Tamil community, can live a life of equality, justice, peace and dignity in a united Sri Lanka," he added.
Modi further added that he has assured Wickremesinghe of "of continuing commitment to our development partnership - in infrastructure, railways, energy, community development projects, agriculture, capacity building, science and technology, space and civil nuclear field".
He said the two nations will further work for the progress on key bilateral initiatives and hoped that projects will gather speed now. The two prime ministers also discussed the issue of terrorism.
"I also sought his support for Indian investors, who are keen to participate in Sri Lanka's economic development, especially in infrastructure, energy and transport sectors. I offered India's full support to strengthen connectivity between our two countries to deepen human and economic links that will benefit all sections of our societies," Modi said.
"We will intensify cooperation in combating terrorism and work together for security and stability in our maritime neighbourhood. Sri Lanka is our largest partner in defence training programme and we will continue to expand our cooperation in this area," he added.