India denies reports of sending troops to Sri Lanka

India denies reports of sending troops to Sri Lanka

Colombo: India has categorically denied the reports of sending troops to trouble-hit Sri Lanka as the government on Sunday clearly stated that it will stand with the people of the island nation during the “difficult phase”. Responding to the speculations, the Indian high commission in Colombo said, “These reports and such views are also not in keeping with the position of the Government of India.”

The statement pointed out the statement from the External Affairs Ministry which claimed that “India stands with the people of Sri Lanka as they seek to realise their aspirations for prosperity and progress through democratic means and values, established institutions and constitutional framework.” In response to media queries on the situation in Sri Lanka, Arindam Bagchi, the official spokesperson of the Ministry of External Affairs, on Sunday said, “India is Sri Lanka’s closest neighbour and our two countries share deep civilizational bonds. We are aware of the many challenges that Sri Lanka and its people have been facing, and we have stood with the Sri Lankan people as they have tried to overcome this difficult period.”
He pointed out that India has provided unprecedented support of over US$ 3.8 billion to Lanka in 2022 alone to deal with the severe economic crisis. “In pursuance of the central place that Sri Lanka occupies in our Neighbourhood First policy, India has extended this year itself an unprecedented support of over US$ 3.8 billion for ameliorating the serious economic situation in Sri Lanka,” he said.

Sri Lanka is under the grip of an unprecedented economic turmoil, the worst in seven decades, crippled by an acute shortage of foreign exchange that has left it struggling to pay for essential imports of fuel, and other essentials. Meanwhile, embattled Sri Lanka President Gotabaya Rajapaksa has officially informed Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe that he is stepping down from his post. The President has told the PM that he will be resigning as previously announced, the Prime Minister’s media unit said, according to Colombo Gazette. On Saturday, Speaker Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena announced that the President will resign from his post on July 13.