Around 200 Sri Lankan refugees submit petitions to district collector’s office seeking Indian citizenship in Madurai

Madurai: More than 200 Sri Lankan refugees living in Tamil Nadu's Madurai district for 29 years submitted petitions to collector's office on Monday to seek the Indian citizenship. As many as 457 Sri Lankan refugees have been living in Madurai ever since they fled their worn-torn nation in 1990, at the height of the civil war in Sri Lanka. Since then, they have been living in the refugee camps provided by the Tamil Nadu government.

 Around 200 Sri Lankan refugees submit petitions to district collector’s office seeking Indian citizenship in Madurai

Sri Lankan refugees gathered outside distrit collector's office. ANI

"During the final war in Sri Lanka, we took refuge in India. We are grateful to the Government of India and the Government of Tamil Nadu for all the necessary facilities," Sri Lankan refugee K S Jeevan told media outside the district collector's office.

The lack of Indian citizenship makes it difficult for these refugees to apply for a secured job. "It has been 29 years since we came to India and we need to get Indian citizenship. Due to the lack of Indian citizenship, we could not go to any job. We have come to the Madurai District collector today demanding need for Indian citizenship of Tamil Nadu government," he added.

"We want the Indian citizenship, especially for our children," said Pumati, a refugee. "Whenever we tell them they could go back to Sri Lanka, they refuse and tell us that they were born in India and would live in India. They should be granted Indian citizenship."

Updated Date: Jul 02, 2019 09:48:21 IST