IIFA will boost Sri Lankan tourism, says President Mahinda Rajapaksa

Colombo, June 4 (Calcutta Tube) Sri Lanka is hosting International India Film Academy (IIFA) awards ceremony and President Mahinda Rajapaksa says the event will spurt tourism in the country that fought a long war against the Tamil Tigers.

‘Thank you IIFA for choosing my country as the venue for this extravagant event. It will help us in bridging the gap between the two nations in a simple manner,’ Rajapaksa told delegates at the inaugural session of the FICCI-IIFA Global Business Forum here Friday.

‘There is no peace without development and hence as a nation we are trying to provide support to people who have been subjected to various tortures by Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) and this is one such way of telling the world that we have arrived,’ he added.

Rajapaksa also said that the two nations – India and Sri Lanka – have a rich and common cultural heritage and history and that they are trying to strengthen this bond.

‘Peace and stability – this is what I want for my country. And I want to tell the world that we have had major economic success in the past four years and we have improved considerably in terms of infrastructure, roads and airports,’ he said.

Rajapaksa’s statement has come at a time when the South Indian Film Chamber of Commerce stated that southern stars and filmmakers would boycott all Bollywood stars who attend the IIFA event in the Sri Lankan capital.

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