The COVID-19 situation in India was getting worse day by day and that there was the risk of the virus spreading to along Sri Lanka's coastal belt because of the contact with Indian fishing community, Public Health Inspectors Union (PHIs) said.
Union President Upul Rohana said though no COVID-19 cases had been reported from the fishing community, the worsening situation in India posed an increasing danger to Sri Lanka.
“Sri Lankans maintain links with Indians when it comes to illegal smuggling and drug trafficking on the high seas. This has become a widespread business with several fishermen being arrested when caught smuggling narcotics,” he said. “There were also cases in the recent past where several fishermen were arrested for illegally transporting turmeric from India on boats."
Mr. Rohana said there had been several cases of Indian and Sri Lankan fishermen exchanging fish out in the ocean.
Against this backdrop, there is the possibility of fisherman being infected with the virus resulting in it spreading among fellow fishermen and thus making inroads into Sri Lanka.
Meanwhile, the number of confirmed cases in the country stood at 2,901 while 2,755 of them had recovered and discharged from hospitals leaving behind 135 active cases. (Sheain Fernandopulle)