A total of 208 Sri Lanka flights had a stopover at Kerala’s Thiruvananthapuram International Airport for refuelling to date.

On Saturday, 4 flights had stopped at Thiruvananthapuram for refuelling. With this, the total number of Sri Lankan flights had a stopover since May 27 this year is 208. Of these, the most number of flights is Sri Lankan Airlines.

Moreover, 130 Sri Lankan Airlines flights stopped at Thiruvananthapuram for refuelling till yesterday. Other airlines are Fly Dubai, Oman Air, Gulf Air, Air Arabia, Emirates and Fits Voyage flying to various destinations.

The Sri Lankan flights started refuelling from Thiruvananthapuram Airport since May 27, 2022 after they faced a shortage of fuel.

Notably, Sri Lanka is suffering its worst economic crisis since gaining independence in 1948, which comes on the heels of successive waves of COVID-19, threatening to undo years of development progress and severely undermining the country’s ability to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Earlier, amid the fuel crisis in Sri Lanka, people have been seen waiting in long queues outside the gas station for over 12 hours. Sri Lanka has been facing crippling fuel shortages since February, as the country lacks the foreign exchange reserve to purchase enough fuel for its residents amid turmoil in its government lately, according to China Central Television (CCT).

People waiting outside a local gas station in the city of Colombo, vehicles, motorbikes and their owners had waited in at least 2 km of the line, which occupied parts of the road that led to the station. There were some people who were working in services industries, including healthcare.

“We have influenced much. I’m a doctor here. I have to work in the hospital and be in the queue to get the fuel. But it’s like a week we walk, and we have to come in the morning or night and be in the queue all night, and the next day, we have to go to work also,” Ushki, a resident who was in line to get his car refuelled had said.

Fuel shortages have brought severe impacts to the daily lives of locals. People who are not working in the service sector industries can hardly get fuel for their cars unless they have written permits granted by relevant authorities.

Some locals pointed out that their country should shake off its dependence on the U.S. dollar, while some believe the political situation could be settled to tackle the country’s ongoing issues. “We have to make more choices to make a foreign exchange. Otherwise, we are in trouble. This crisis will go and go and go, and we are going to be a stuck country,” Ushki added.

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