Lanka in turmoil: Dire need to pacify protesters, ensure political stability - The Tribune India

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Lanka in turmoil

Dire need to pacify protesters, ensure political stability

Lanka in turmoil


The political chaos and the economic crisis are a double whammy for Sri Lanka, which continues to flounder after the ouster of President Gotabaya Rajapaksa. Peaceful transfer of power looks unlikely as the authorities are struggling to restore the rule of law. A session of Parliament needs to be convened urgently so that lawmakers can elect a new President for the remaining two years of Gotabaya’s term. The onus is on all political parties to put their heads together in the interests of Sri Lanka’s 2.2 crore citizens.

The anger and despair of the masses, who bore the brunt of misgovernance for years, have brought the country to the crossroads. It has been a daily grind for millions of people to get bare essentials. The priority should be to cool frayed tempers by streamlining the procurement and distribution of supplies and ensuring that humanitarian assistance being provided by India and other nations reaches the needy. At the same time, various stakeholders must work towards securing political stability. The protesters have demanded the formation of an interim government which subscribes to the ‘economic, social and political aims and aspirations of the people’s struggle’, besides the abolition of executive presidency and the initiation of a mechanism to hold free and fair elections. They also want a new Constitution that would endorse people’s sovereignty and establish the right to life as a fundamental right. These demands present formidable challenges for the lawmakers, who find themselves in the harsh glare of the restless public. They have to come up with a democratic and constitutional setup that would promise accountability and transparency in governance and raise hopes of a new dawn for the citizens.

India has said it stands with the Sri Lankan people in their aspirations for prosperity and progress through democratic means, established institutions and constitutional framework. However, it’s the failure of these very institutions that has led to the current mess. As Sri Lanka gets ready to press the reset button, every well-thought-out transformative step can contribute towards ending economic and political uncertainty. Any opportunistic move by politicians, however, would make it sink deeper into the mire.

#gotabaya rajapaksa #sri lanka


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