The External Affairs Minister was received by Minister of Social Services Felix Perera and Indian High Commissioner in Colombo, YK Sinha at Bandaranaike International Airport. (Agencies)
Khurshid's two-day visit is his first to Sri Lanka as the External Affairs Minister and it comes at a critical time following the historic Northern Provincial elections last month in which, the country's main Tamil party Tamil National Alliance (TNA) triumphed.
Apart from holding talks with his Sri Lankan counterpart GL Peiris, Khurshid will call on President Mahinda Rajapaksa and meet other senior leaders.
He is also expected to visit Jaffna on Monday and meet top leaders there, including Chief Minister-elect of the Northern Province CV Wigneswaran, who will be sworn in here by President Rajapaksa later on Monday.
Expeditious implementation of the 13th amendment on devolution of powers to the provinces, Indian fishermen languishing in Sri Lankan jails, implementation of the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission and cooperation in commerce are some of the main issues which are expected to be highlighted by the minister during his meetings.
The issue of Sri Lankan forces arresting scores of Indian fishermen has become contentious with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh also raising it with the Sri Lankan Foreign Minister, when he called on him to invite him for Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in Colombo in November.
Last week, a Sri Lankan court had ordered release of 35 Indian fishermen but did not pass a direction on five seized boats.
Also, 20 fishermen were arrested last week by Lankan Navy in the Palk Strait. Another issue, which is expected to be discussed during the talks, is India's continuous demand of full implementation of the 13th amendment, a byproduct of the 1987 Indo-Lanka Accord.
The External Affairs Minister was received by Minister of Social Services Felix Perera and Indian High Commissioner in Colombo, YK Sinha at Bandaranaike International Airport.