When the news came in that China is experiencing the threat of a new virus infection no one in Sri Lanka thought that it could become a pandemic in another few days. They thought it was limited to China and Sri Lanka will be out of trouble from the covid-19 virus which was then known as corona virus.
But as the Chinese cases started spreading, and the world saw that China was just the beginning, everyone panicked and thought that avoiding the Chinese would solve the problem. During the first week of the news, people in Sri Lanka looked at the Chinese with suspicion. But very soon the people of Sri Lanka realized that the covid-19 virus was invading other lands. It did not take long for the authorities to find covid-19 in Sri Lanka, initially a few people who had guided a team of Italian tourists, and then from among recent Sri Lankan returnees from Italy. The refusal of them to spend time in quarantine led the authorities to take harsh measures regarding all returnees from other countries.
Currently all activities in Sri Lanka have come to a screeching halt due to the curfew imposed by the government, and the foreigners have been trying to jump on a flight home as soon as possible. On the 21st of March 2020, the government issued a notice for all foreigners telling them to inform the police stations if they are unable to find transport to the airport. The notice said that some passengers will be sent on charter flights while others would be able to take a routine flight flying via Sri Lanka.
Foreigners in Sri Lanka have been under the suspicion of carrying the virus due to the fear in locals and the knowledge that Italy is the hardest hit country at present. But it does not mean that tourists get attacked but just the common notion of the locals and the suspicious looks and keeping a distance from foreigners.
In future, however, if tourism comes back to life someday, then it will all be fine as before but as for now, tourism is not even a valid thing in Sri Lanka anymore. All tourist resorts are shut down, and roads are empty with a post-apocalyptic appearance. Covid-19 in Sri Lanka has wrought havoc in the economy and tourism to the highest imaginable extent, and there is still no hope anywhere in the horizon until a definitive cure for the deadly pandemic is found anywhere in the world.