The Indian High Commission in Sri Lanka on Friday categorically denied that it had stopped issuing visas to the country, saying that the inability of Visa Wing staff to enter the office was hampered by operational difficulties, most of them Sri Lankan nationals. The High Commission said they were trying to get back to normal soon.
“The High Commission categorically denies that it or the Indian Consulate-General or #Assistant High Commission in #SriLankan has stopped issuing visas. Indian High Commission tweeted.
“We are trying to get our activities back to normal soon. We are committed to facilitating #India travel for #SriLankans. Welcoming #SriLankans to #India just as #Indians are in #SriLanka, “it said. Sri Lanka is facing its worst economic crisis since independence from Britain in 1948, sparking protests that have crippled the country.
Sri Lanka’s worst economic crisis has sparked widespread protests calling for political reform and the resignation of President Gotabhaya Rajapaksa. On April 1, President Rajapaksa declared a state of emergency, lifting it five days later. The government re-imposed a state of emergency on May 6, after police fired tear gas and arrested students protesting near parliament, which was suspended until May 17. Although the protest was extremely peaceful, police in riot gear stormed a rally on April 19, removing hundreds of protesters by truck. Used tear gas and water cannon against protesters. Authorities have made numerous arrests and imposed repeated curfews.
The political crisis began in late March when people were injured by long hours of power outages and the necessary shortages took to the streets to demand the resignation of the government. President Gotabaya Rajapaksa has fired his cabinet and appointed a young one in response to a call for his resignation. Protests have been going on in front of his secretariat for more than a month.
On Monday, his brother, Mahinda Rajapaksa, resigned as prime minister to pave the way for an interim political party to appoint a government for the presidency. And more than 200 people injured in the violence.
Sri Lankan authorities on Wednesday deployed army and military vehicles on the streets to ensure public safety in the capital amid nationwide protests over the government’s failure to deal with the worst economic crisis. The deployment comes a day after the country’s defense ministry instructed the army. Air force and navy personnel fired shots to loot public property or harm others amid violent protests across the island over the unprecedented economic crisis.