All ready the death toll of people who have died in fuel or cooking gas queue has reached to ten people and it remains to be seen if this trend could be reversed by Minister Kanchana Wijesekara’s proposal to issue a guaranteed quota to every vehicle owner.
The incidents leading to these deaths are pathetic. for instance, two people died in separate fuel queues recently after waiting in fuel queues for long hours.
n Sri Lanka after on Thursday, June 16, reports said, bringing the cash-strapped country’s fuel or cooking gas queue death toll to 10.
A 53-year-old three-wheel driver Upali dropped dead while waiting for hours at a filling station in the Wekada petrol shed in Panadura, south of l Colombo.
Upali had been waiting in two queues for almost a day without a proper meal to pump fuel. and when he fell down the Panandura hospital didn’t have an ambulance and was stuck in Bambalapitya in Colombo, while the police emergency hotline 911 although called didn’t arrive. and Upali died on admission half an hour later.
The first question is wasn’t there on good Samaritan to take Upali, a man whom many knew in the area, to the hospital before he was dead.
Fuel Shortage :
The second question is about the viability of the Energy minister’s plan to provide a quota by the first week of July while there is a foreign exchange crisis for fuel purchases that have not been resolved.
‘We have no choice but to register consumers at filling stations and give them a guaranteed weekly quota until we are able to strengthen the financial situation,’ the minister Wijesekara said.
The Indian credit line for fuel has come to an end and the only hope is Russian crude oil on loan.
The Sri Lankan government has approached Moscow’s envoy in Colombo to help secure direct supplies of Russian oil, energy minister Wijesekera said.
In order to overcome the US-led embargo, Russia is trading oil at high discounts and selling some of its oil on a credit line to a troubled nation, a deal that may not be objectionable to many on humanitarian grounds, may not be a bad idea.