Sri Lanka crisis: Students in India worried about families, finances

New Delhi: Families, future and finances- Srilankan students in India are on hooks getting bothered about the three as their kin back home struggle with the developments in wake of the Island nation facing its worst economic crisis in seven decades.

Amritha Vidyapathy, who hails from Colombo and is a student in Lucknow, says she has been urging his family to move to India with her considering the unfolding situation since months.

“I have been urging them to come with me here but my family has their whole life there which is now in shambles considering the businesses which were already affected by the pandemic are in worse state now. I don’t know what future holds for me and my family,” she said.

MS Education Academy

Another student Ama Nethmi, is wondering about how long her family will be able to send her money to help her survive in India.

“I am totally dependent on money which my family sends as I am still a student. Considering how the situation is, not sure how long will they be able to send me money and how will they survive. I am not sure if going back to them is even an option at the moment,” she said.

Sri Lanka is facing its worst economic crisis in seven decades, with a severe foreign exchange shortage hampering the import of essentials including food, fuel and medicines.

The economic crisis also sparked a political crisis in the country after a popular uprising against the government forced Rajapaksa to flee the country and resign as president. In his resignation letter, Rajapksa, 73, blamed the COVID-19 pandemic and the lockdown for Sri Lanka’s economic woes.

A final-year student of the MDes course in furniture and interior design at the National Institute of Design (NID), Ahmedabad, said, people are not being able to get the basic amenities in Sri Lanka.

“I am speaking to them continously and getting updates of the unfolding situation, none of which are positive. I had plans to go back to my country and work in the area I specialised in but I don’t think so it is feasible now. Even if I work here, it will be take me some time to be able to send any money back home to help my family in Sri Lanka,” he said.

According to officials statistics, there are over 14,000 Srilankan students enrolled in various universities in India.

Another Srilankan student at a university in Bangalore, who did not wish to be identified said, ” watching news about the developments in my country is worrisome. There is shortage of essential goods such as fuel, cooking gas, and power cuts for 13 hours a day, its a chaos which is unimaginable”.

The island nation off the tip of southeast India needs about USD 5 billion in the next six months to cover basic necessities for its 22 million people, who have been struggling with long queues, worsening shortages and power cuts.

Sri Lankan lawmakers met Saturday to begin the process of choosing a new leader to replace Rajapaksa, who is now in Singapore.

India has been the principal source of foreign assistance to Sri Lanka this year.

On Friday, the Indian High Commission here reiterated that India will continue to stand with the people of Sri Lanka as they seek to realise their aspirations for prosperity and progress through democratic means and values as well as established institutions and a constitutional framework.

The United Nations in Sri Lanka has urged all stakeholders in the island nation to ensure a peaceful transition of power in full respect for the Constitution and to ensure that the root causes of the current instability and people’s grievances are addressed.

Back to top button