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20 May 2022

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

The Index Today

On Friday, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe warned of a food shortage as the island nation battles a devastating economic crisis as thousands of people queued for cooking gas and petrol in Sri Lanka's commercial capital

"Only about 200 cylinders were delivered, even though there were about 500 people," said Mohammad Shazly, a part-time chauffeur in a queue for the third day in the hope of procuring cooking gas for his family of five. Hundreds of others were in line, with empty cylinders by their side.

"Without gas, without kerosene oil, we can't do anything," Shazly said. "Last option what? Without food we are going to die. That will happen hundred percent."

Sri Lanka is a tourism-dependent country and now is facing a dire shortage of foreign exchange, fuel and medicines, and economic activity has slowed to a crawl. Public transport is also depleted and traffic is light as most people are staying at home because of the scarcity of petrol.


©Photo: Daily Maverick

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