India said on Monday it has delivered about 40,000 tons of petrol to Sri Lanka, days after delivering 40,000 tons of diesel under India’s credit line to help alleviate the acute fuel shortage in the debt-ridden island country, which is grappling with its worst struggle. economic crisis.
India extended an additional USD 500 million credit line to Sri Lanka last month to help the neighboring country import fuel as it struggles to pay for imports after its foreign exchange reserves plummeted in recent times, sparking a devaluation of the currency and caused rising inflation.
“Commitment delivered!! About 40,000 tons of petrol with Indian aid reached Colombo today,” India’s High Commission in Colmbo said in a tweet.
— India in Sri Lanka (@IndiainSL) May 23, 2022
India delivered another 40,000 tons of diesel to Sri Lanka on Saturday under the credit facility.
The Sri Lankan government has asked its non-essential personnel to stay at home due to the petrol and diesel shortage. Lawmakers have asked the parliament speaker to accommodate them in hotels as they cannot reach parliament from their homes due to lack of transport fuel.
A severe shortage of foreign reserves has led to long lines for fuel, cooking gas and other necessities, while power cuts and rising food prices have caused people misery.
In a tragic incident, a two-day-old baby died on Sunday because her father could not find petrol to take her to hospital from the central hillside area of Haldummullla in Badulla district.
The baby appeared to be undergoing a yellowing of her skin. Her father was unable to find a vehicle to take her to the hospital due to the current fuel shortage in the country.
dr. Janaka Pathirana, the medical officer at Diyathalawa Hospital, said it was an avoidable death.
The Sri Lankan government has warned it will suspend fuel deliveries if transporters are threatened after an angry mob set fire to the home of a gas pump owner in the country’s north-central province.
Spontaneous protests have been reported at gas stations across the country where consumers have waited for hours in long winding lines for fuel.
Energy and Energy Minister Kanchana Wijesekera said that if the public continues to threaten the truck drivers delivering the fuel, the government should suspend fuel deliveries for the safety of the transport personnel.
“Organized groups have been reported to prevent fuel trucks from passing through certain areas and demand to be unloaded at various gas stations and threaten to set them on fire. If this continues, we will have to suspend deliveries for the safety of transport personnel,” he tweeted. he Friday.
An Indian fuel line of credit has been in operation since February as Sri Lanka was unable to pay for fuel imports due to the forex crisis.
Earlier, India delivered 40,000 metric tons of diesel to Sri Lanka on April 2. This was India’s fourth shipment of fuel delivered to Sri Lanka under the credit line. India and Sri Lanka signed a $500 million credit line agreement on February 2, 2022 for the purchase of petroleum products.
With the economic crisis and the shortage of forex, India’s $500 million credit line for fuel imports has provided a lifeline to the island, which is currently experiencing the worst economic crisis since independence in 1948.
The economic crisis has also led to a political crisis in Sri Lanka and a call for the resignation of President Gotabaya Rajapaksa.
The crisis forced Mahinda Rajapaksa, the president’s older brother, to resign as prime minister on May 9.
(This story was not edited by DailyExpertNews staff and was generated automatically from a syndicated feed.)