External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid will now lead the Indian delegation to the CHOGM summit of 53 countries, being held in Asia after two decades.
Navtej Sarna, additional secretary in the external affairs ministry, and Pavan Kapoor, joint secretary, UN political division of the ministry, will attend the official-level meetings ahead of the summit.
Foreign Secretary Sujatha Singh would also be there.
The decision to keep the prime minister away from Colombo has been hailed by DMK patriarch M. Karunanidhi, who said it was "somewhat comforting that at least Manmohan Singh has listened to our voice".
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