Seven people from Sri Lanka, including a woman and two girls, reached India’s Dhanushkodi islet near Rameswaram by a boat, in the early hours of Monday (27), Indian Marine Police said.

Preliminary inquiries revealed that the seven persons belonged to one family. According to what the family told police, they were struggling to make ends meet due to the economic crisis in Sri Lanka. As they could not repay their mounting debts, they decided to flee the nation and reach Indian shores, an officer told media persons at Mandapam.

The family had coughed up 1.50 lakh Sri Lankan rupees (SLR) to the boatman at Mannar, from where they crossed the Palk Bay in about three hours and reached Dhanushkodi islet. Upon information, the Marine Police brought them to the station for interrogation.

Following the completion of the investigation, all the seven members identified as Nagaraja (42), Vanithini (38), Anojan (13), Kajeevan (9), Tanushika (4), Ajanthan (18) and Keesalin (17) were taken to the Mandapam Rehabilitation Centre.

An official at the Centre told The Hindu that there were 282 refugees from Sri Lanka lodged at the Centre date, while two among them had died due to age-related ailments last year.

Source – The Hindu