The government yesterday issued a travel warning against those visiting Tamil Nadu in India and requested the Sri Lankan public to not to visit Tamil Nadu until further notice.
The government regrets the increasing number of instances of intimidation of Sri Lankan nationals visiting Tamil Nadu for the purposes of tourism, religious pilgrimages, sporting and cultural activities and professional training, the Ministry of External Affairs said.
"These visits are a reflection of people to people contact between the polity of two countries which are bound by age old friendly ties and traditions," the Ministry said.
A group of 184 Sri Lankan pilgrims visiting the Poornimatha Church in Thanjavur have been mobbed yesterday and become refuge in the church.
The government has taken all steps required through the Indian Government to seek the safety of these pilgrims.
The Ministry of External Affairs said the government is "constrained to request Sri Lankan nationals in the interest of their security to desist from undertaking visits to Tamil Nadu until further notice."
The Sri Lankans, who has a compelling reason to visit Tamil Nadu, should inform the Sri Lanka Deputy High Commission in Chennai prior to their visit.
The Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu J. Jayalalithaa yesterday ordered the state officials to send back two Sri Lankan school soccer teams which were in Chennai to play friendly matches in the state.
However, travel to all other states in India is safe for Sri Lanka nationals.
Contact details of the Deputy High Commission in Chennai are as follows:
56, Sterling Road, Nungambakkam
Chennai – 600 034
Office Telephone Numbers
0091 44 28247896
0091 44 28252612
0091 44 28241047
0091 44 28241894
0091 44 28254242