Sri Lanka seeks India help with severe economic crisis
Undergoing a huge economic crisis and turmoil, Sri Lankan Opposition leader and Member of Parliament (MP) Sajith Premadasa has urged Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi to help their nation to the maximum possible extent.
The Opposition leader said, "Please try and help Sri Lanka to the maximum possible extent. This is our motherland and we need to save it." While responding to the parties' readiness to participate in an election, if it takes place, Premadasa said that he and his party are ready to contest the election.
Reiterating opposition parties' demands, Premadasa said, "We're seeking immediate relief for the people. We want to protect the lives of the people and their rights."
Sri Lanka is battling a severe economic crisis with food and fuel scarcity affecting a large number of the people in the island nation. The economy has been in a free-fall since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Sri Lanka is also facing a foreign exchange shortage, which has, incidentally, affected its capacity to import food and fuel, leading to the power cuts in the country. The shortage of essential goods forced Sri Lanka to seek assistance from friendly countries.
Premadasa said that the people in the country are asking for a change in the government to bring relief from the economic crisis.
"The whole country is calling for wholesale change. What we ask for is a pathbreaking wholesale change that brings relief to the country, not relief to politicians. We don't want a game of musical chairs where politicians exchange their positions," he added.
On April 3, 26-member Sri Lankan Cabinet Ministers submitted resignations amid rising public anger against the government over the economic crisis.
Confirming this development, MP Dinesh Gunawardena said Mahinda Rajapaksa will continue to be in the office.
Meanwhile, the 36-hour long curfew that was imposed on Sri Lanka on April 2 at 6 pm was lifted on April 4 morning, but the country is still under a state of emergency.
Earlier on Saturday, India delivered 40,000 MT of diesel to Sri Lanka to help ease the power crisis in the island country. As part of the US 500 million oil line of credit (LoC) extended by India to Sri Lanka, this was the fourth consignment of fuel delivered to Colombo.
Further, India has supplied around 200,000 MT of fuel to the island nation over the last 50 days.