Refugees have started flocking to Dhanushkari in Tamil Nadu, India, following the economic crisis in Sri Lanka. They are talking about a terrible voyage. Mary Clarin, 22, has a four-month-old baby on her lap. The family left Sri Lanka for India in the last week of March with husband Gajendran. They planned to reach Dhanushkari via Rameshwaram. He also talked to a fisherman like that. The fisherman said that he would take the whole road through the rough sea for 50,000 rupees. But in the end the fisherman did not speak.
Sitting in the office of the Coast Guard in Dhanushkari, Mary said that at first the fisherman took fifty thousand rupees from them. The fisherman then dropped them off on a small sand island in the middle of the sea and said another boat would come and take them to India. The fisherman returned to Sri Lanka. But no more boats come from India. No food, no water, little milk for baby is running out fast. Sitting on that uninhabited baliari, they thought they would have to die there if they didn’t get food.
Meanwhile, the Indian Coast Guard has received reports that three people are stranded on the Indo-Sri Lankan maritime border. The news probably came from fishermen. The Indian Coast Guard then rushed to the spot. The family was brought to Dhanushkari. During the Jaffna War, LTTE, there were many Sri Lankan refugees in this bow. But now there are not too many Sri Lankan refugees. Since the last week of March, Sri Lankan refugees have started arriving there again.
According to the Indian Coast Guard, at least 18 Sri Lankans reached Dhanushkari in the last week of March. Everyone has come to India on a fishing boat or a raft made of fiber. They also said that many more people are trying to come.
Why are you coming?
According to refugees, commodity prices have skyrocketed in Sri Lanka in recent months. The state of emergency has already begun. The price of things is rising every day. As a result, the middle class is facing an uncertain future. Their idea is that the situation will be more critical. That is why they have started coming to India. However, the Coast Guard said it had not received any official decision on the issue. As a result, the refugees are being kept in the custody of the Coast Guard by interrogation.
What is India saying?
An Indian foreign ministry official has said that a large number of refugees from Sri Lanka are expected to start entering India. However, no decision has been taken yet on what will be done with them. But India is keeping a close eye on the situation in Sri Lanka.
According to the locals of Dhanushkari, most of the people who have come so far are from Jaffna. But people from other parts of the country are also trying to flee, the refugees said. DW.