Azmi and his stall

Azmi

Age: 36
Occupation: Retailer, sells sunglasses
Hometown: Nuwara, Kandy
Race & Religion: Muslim

Azmi

“I liked living here, especially when my father was alive. My father was a Muslim from Jaffna, my childhood was here and I am fond of it. Since my father’s demise, I don’t spend as much time here as I used to. I have settled in Kandy with my family.”

What’s your favourite place in the North?
My favourite place is Keerimalai, where I have my little sunglass stall. I come here once a month.

What do you love about Sri Lanka?
I like that Sri Lanka has so many different places and different people. Many of my good friends are Tamil. I like that these days we can live peacefully without any problems.

What don’t you like about Sri Lanka?
Conflict and those kind of problems.

Who do you look up to?
Kumar Sangakkara, the cricket player.

Where is your family? My father passed away.
My mother lives in Kandy where I have spent most of my life. My wife and children also live in Kandy.

What is your favourite food?
I like Palmyrah Jaggery (palm sugar).

What’s the worst experience you have had?
In 1990 when I was 10 years old, my family were forced to flee the house. We had to leave everything behind and were not allowed to take anything with us, except for the clothes that we wore. I liked living here, especially when my father was alive. My father was a Muslim from Jaffna, my childhood was here and I am fond of it. Since my father’s demise, I don’t spend as much time here as I used to. I have settled in Kandy with my family.

How has life changed since the end of war?
Life has been improving a lot. Now I can come here and conduct my business peacefully.

Has anyone helped you rebuild your life?
My mother has helped me start my business. She went to Saudi Arabia to work and sent us money.

What are your hopes for the future?
I want to live peacefully and improve my business.