Sri Lanka: Angry Protesters burn down Rajapaksa’s house amid a nationwide crisis

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The economic crises in Sri Lanka are degenerating daily, protesters are getting more violent as Rajapaksa’s family remains in power.

On May 09, the ancestral home of the Sri Lanka Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa in the city of Kurunegala was set on fire hours after he tendered his resignation letter to his younger brother, President Gotabaya Rajapaksa.

The attack is in retaliation to an earlier attack on anti-government protesters by government supporters.

According to reports, official residents of Sri Lanka’s Moratuwa Mayor Sama Lal Fernando and the MPs Sanath Nishantha, Ramesh Pathirana, Mahipala Herath, Thissa Kuttiarachchi and Nima Lana were set on fire.

Ancestral home of the Rajapaksa on fire
Ancestral home of the Rajapaksa on fire

According to a Daily Mirror report, “many protesters, including the Inter-University Students Federation (IUSF), were out on the streets and attacked the Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna MPs. Even some Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) offices were all set ablaze.”

Local police report that two persons were shot and five others were severely injured at the residents of the Chairman of the Weekraketiya Pradeshiya Sabha.

Out of control for the police, the military has been deployed on the roads to calm the situation as the Island-wife curfew is achieving less.

Police said more than 100 protesters were injured on Monday at the Galle Face protest site during a clash between the pro and anti-government protesters amid a nationwide curfew.

Mahinda tweeted minutes after tendering his resignation, “While emotions are running high in Sri Lanka, I urge our general public to exercise restraint and remember that violence only begets violence. The economic crisis we are in needs an economical solution which this administration is committed to resolving.”

Sri Lanka is facing the worst economic struggle since independence. Food and fuel shortages, prices of foodstuff are all-time high and constant power cuts are affecting many citizens and companies, which has led to nationwide protests.

Foreign exchange shortages are believed to be the cause of the current recession, and a fall in tourism is attributed to the covid-19 pandemic plus reckless economic policies.

For example, last year, the Sri Lanka government banned chemical fertilizer in an attempt to make local agriculture “100 per cent organic.”

The shortage of foreign exchange has led to Sri Lanka recently defaulting on the entire foreign debt amounting to about USD 51 billion.

The situation has led to a nationwide protest as the citizens call on Mahinda Rajapaksa and the 72 years old President Gotabaya Rajapaksa to resign.

Mahinda Rajapaksa Resigns as Prime Minister

After paying a deaf ear to the situation for weeks, Mahinda resigned on Monday, May 09 2022, amid unprecedented anti-government protests across the country.

PM Mahinda, 76, submitted his resignation to his brother, President Gotabaya, 72, after violence was reported in Colombo.

The PM said he hoped his resignation would pave the way for all the All-Party Interim Government.

He added that he is “ready to make any sacrifice even in the future in order to help the people and the government overcome the present crisis.”

According to a statement from his office, “To find solutions to the current socio-economic and political problems, President Gotabaya Rajapaksa invites all parties representing parliament to join in a national unity government.”

“President asks all citizens to maintain peace,” it added.
Meanwhile, authorities extended the island-wide curfew imposed from 7.00pm on Monday till 7.00am on Wednesday.

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