‘India extended unprecedented help’: High Commission in Colombo on reports of aid withdrawal

At a time when Sri Lanka is going through its worst economic crisis leading to severe shortage of food and fuel supplies for its people, India as its nearest neighbour stepped up to extend financial help and had even sent huge supplies and medicines to the island nation to tide over the crisis

FP Staff September 20, 2022 16:08:17 IST
‘India extended unprecedented help’: High Commission in Colombo on reports of aid withdrawal

India has extended significant financial aid to Sri Lanka during the severe economic crisis that has hit the nation. Representational image. AP

New Delhi: Taken aback by emerging reports of no further financial aid from India, the Indian High Commission in Colombo, Sri Lanka has lashed out at fake media reports on Twitter suggesting that the country had abruptly stopped extending financial support to the island nation battling a severe economic crisis for months now.

In a series of tweets, the Indian High Commission reiterated that it had seen the relevant reports and rubbished claims that the financial help had stopped suddenly from the bigger nation.

“We have seen the relevant media reports. We would like to emphasise that India has extended unprecedented bilateral assistance amounting close to USD 4 billion this year for ameliorating the difficulties faced by the people of Sri Lanka. India has also advocated to other bilateral and multilateral partners supporting Sri Lanka expeditiously in its current economic difficulties,” the first tweet by the diplomatic body read.

“We have also noted the conclusion of a Staff Level Agreement between IMF and Government of Sri Lanka. Its further approval within IMF is contingent upon, inter alia, on Sri Lanka’s debt sustainability.  We continue to be supportive of Sri Lanka in all possible ways,” the second tweet read.

At a time when Sri Lanka is going through its worst possible economic crisis leading to severe shortage of food and fuel supplies for its citizens, India as its nearest neighbour stepped up to extend financial help and had even sent huge supplies and medicines to the island nation to tide over the crisis.

There are a number of civil infrastructural projects too that India is helming in Sri Lanka. “In addition, our bilateral development cooperation projects in Sri Lanka, which cumulatively total about USD 3.5 billion, are ongoing,” the Indian High Commission in Colombo reiterated in response to the reports of withdrawal of aid.

Sri Lankans also continue to avail scholarships for higher education and skills training in premier Indian institutions. “These aspects of our close and long-standing cooperation with Sri Lanka also contribute to the efforts for addressing Sri Lanka’s current economic difficulties,” Officials of India’s diplomatic presence in Sri Lanka wrote on Twitter.

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