Rameswaram (Tamil Nadu) [India], June 27 (ANI): Amid the economic crisis in Sri Lanka, many citizens are fleeing the island nation. On Monday, two Sri Lankan refugees were found on Rameswaram island and they are investigated by the Tamil Nadu Police.
"Two Sri Lankan refugees who arrived at the Gothandaramar Temple beach in Rameswaram island, are being investigated by Q Branch police and Central State Intelligence," reported Q Branch Police.
The Q Branch is one of the CID (Criminal Investigation Department) wings of the Tamil Nadu police.
Rameswaram is the closest Indian city to Sri Lanka. Rameswaram is the closest point from which to reach India from Sri Lanka.
The economic crisis in Sri Lanka has triggered an exodus. They are economic refugees, trying to escape a dire situation in Sri Lanka, which is reeling under a severe economic crisis.
Earlier in March, three Sri Lankan Tamils were booked under various sections of the Indian Passport Rule and the Foreigners Act and remanded in custody following a Rameshwaram court order.
Tamils who have no way to survive due to the shortage of food, and high inflation following the economic crisis in Sri Lanka are preparing to leave the island nation and enter India as refugees.
In this situation, the first group of six Sri Lankan Tamils, including three children from Kokkupidiyan and Mannar, next to the Sri Lankan Chilawathurai, came in a mysterious boat from Pesalai and got stuck in a sand dune islet near Dhanushkodi. They were rescued by the Indian Coast Guard.
The second group of 10 Sri Lankan Tamils arrived at the bridge near Dhanushkodi in a private plastic boat from Vavuniya last night. A group of two men including three women, and 5 children were taken to the Marine Police Station by the Dhanushkodi Coastal security wing Police.
They were interrogated by the Immigration Department, Intelligence, Indian Coast Guard and Q-Branch police.
Notably, Sri Lanka has been facing the worst economic crisis since independence in 1948, leading to an acute shortage of essential items like food, medicine, cooking gas and fuel across the island nation.
The nearly-bankrupt country, with an acute foreign currency crisis that resulted in foreign debt default, had announced in April that it is suspending nearly USD 7 billion foreign debt repayment due for this year out of about USD 25 billion due through 2026. Sri Lanka's total foreign debt.
The economic crisis has particularly impacted food security, agriculture, livelihoods, and access to health services. Food production in the last harvest season was 40 - 50 per cent lower than last year, and the current agricultural season is at risk, with seeds, fertilizers, fuel and credit shortages.
Sri Lanka is one of the few nations named by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) which is expected to go without food due to the global food shortage expected this year. (ANI)