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Sri Lankan situation is similar to that of India’s 1991 economic crisis, says opposition MP Harsha de Silva


Harsha de Silva, an MP with the opposition Samagi Jana Balawegaya (SJB) party in Sri Lanka, has said that the situation in the country is similar to that of India’s 1991 economic crisis. He added that Sri Lanka will be able to come out of this crisis and that is only if the political parties here stand together.

“At the moment, Sri Lanka is in a situation similar to the economic crisis in India in 1991, which was revived by all political parties working together along with the efficient work of Dr Manmohan Singh and Montek singh Ahluwaliya. The Indian political parties were united and they came out of the crisis, and Sri Lanka will too, but only if the political parties here stand together.”

“The plan will fail if the parties are separated. The president here has to create a platform for the political parties to come together,” said Harsha de Silva.

‘PEOPLE WANT GOTABAYA TO GO’

The MP said that the situation in Sri Lanka was complex and that everyone has the responsibility to rescue it from further calamity.

“That is why our political party (Samagi Jana Balawegaya), has accepted to be part of a national government on the condition that the President is able to give a timeframe to abolish his official executive powers and step down.”

Harsha de Silva stated that this was the demand of the Sri Lankan people of the country and that they wanted Gotabaya Rajapaksa to go.

“We are not asking him to leave tomorrow. If the president works towards that, we will work towards an all-party government. If the president doesn’t do that, we will continue to be in opposition and will only help in ensuring the country comes out of the economic crisis.”

Also Read: Power cuts and high LPG prices cripple daily life of Sri Lankan families

‘PM HAS TO CONVINCE PREZ TO RESIGN’

We will not scuttle PM Wickramasinghe, but if they want us to be in the government and in the cabinet, then he has to convince the President to resign, which is the basic demand of the country, said the MP.

“I hold Gotabaya Rajapaksa, Mahinda Rajapksa and the extended family responsible for taking the country to an abyss and creating misery for the people. I am not saying there was no problem before they came to power. But we need to remember that from 1994 they have been holding the executive office. The same political camp has been holding on to power,” said the MP.

“Other political parties have also been part of bad decisions. But the trigger for the collapse was the totally unimaginable tax cut that emptied the coffers and then printed money to fill the void. Another was the overnight ban on the importation of chemical fertilisers,” added Harsha de Silva.

On Ranil Wickramasinghe proving his majority, Harsh de Silva said that the opposition party with the second highest mandate should have been given the chance to lead the government. But the SJB will continue to support the way to come out of the economic crisis, he said.

‘CAN’T CHANGE THE PAST’

On China’s role in Sri Lanka’s crisis the MP said, “This is a classic Indian question. What is done is done. We can’t undo the projects now. What we can do now is to figure out a way to come out of the debt. We have to restructure it and we have to talk to the Chinese and come to a solution. Some middle ground where we can manage our debt repayment sustainably. We can’t change the past.”

Addressing the current uprising and protests amid the economic scenario, the MP said that the violence, which was instigated by the Rajapaksa supporters and the way the public retaliated is not how the country likes to see its people.





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