In crisis-hit Sri Lanka, state of emergency lifted: 5 key developments

The island nation of 22 million people is in the middle of its economic crisis since 1948, when it gained independence from British rule.
Higher National Diploma (HND) students take part in a demonstration demanding the resignation of Sri Lanka's President Gotabaya Rajapaksa over the country's crippling economic crisis, in Colombo on May 21, 2022. (Photo by ISHARA S. KODIKARA / AFP)
Higher National Diploma (HND) students take part in a demonstration demanding the resignation of Sri Lanka's President Gotabaya Rajapaksa over the country's crippling economic crisis, in Colombo on May 21, 2022. (Photo by ISHARA S. KODIKARA / AFP)
Published on May 21, 2022 07:45 PM IST
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By, New Delhi

The Sri Lankan government on Saturday lifted the state of emergency, which it imposed in the island nation earlier this month for a second time amid the ongoing financial crisis, the country's wort-ever. Embattled President Gotabaya Rajapaksa had announced a state of emergency with effect from May 6 midnight, almost a month after imposing the first phase, on April 1.

Here are the developments from Saturday as Sri Lanka continues to battle its economic crisis:

(1.) Citing an improvement in the law and order situation, the Presidential Secretariat announced emergency had been lifted with effect from Friday midnight, local media reported. Under the state of emergency, police and security forces had sweeping powers to arbitrarily arrest and detain people.

Also Read | Sri Lanka falls into default for the first time ever

(2.) The Criminal Investigation Department (CID) questioned a senior police officer, Inspector General of Police (IGP) Chandana D Wickramaratne, in connection with the May 9 assault on peaceful demonstrators by Rajapaksa supporters at the Galle Face Green protest site in Colombo.

Also Read | Inside the Sri Lankan people’s protest

(3.) Several parts of Colombo, the country's largest city and financial capital, will witness a 10-hour-long water supply cut. The water supply cut will begin at 10pm and continue till 8am on Sunday.

Also Read | Thousands queue for petrol, gas in Sri Lanka amid warnings of food shortages

(4.) Ranil Wickremesinghe, who took as prime minister for a record sixth term last Thursday, three days after the resignation of his predecessor and President Gotabaya's older brother, Mahinda Rajapaksa. came under fire for his remarks to Sky News that ‘tourists coming to Sri Lanka can take part in demonstrations.’

Also Read | 'Tourists who want exciting time': Video of Sri Lanka PM joking goes viral

(5.) An additional 40,000 metric tonnes of diesel arrived on the island from India, the Indian high commission announced. More aide, in the form of edible items and medicines, will reach on Sunday.

(With agency inputs)

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