New Delhi: Tensions escalate between Maldives and India following a political clash triggered by Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s push for tourism in Lakshadweep islands. Maldivian MP Zahid Rameez’s disparaging remarks, labeling the idea of competition with them as “delusional” and suggesting a potential downfall due to a “permanent smell in the rooms,” have sparked outrage. Twitter users condemned the comments as ‘distasteful.’ Despite being a top tourist destination, PM Modi’s vision for Lakshadweep has garnered attention, leading to a diplomatic confrontation.
After Rameez’s remarks went viral, India summoned Maldives High Commissioner Ibrahim Shaheeb on Jan 08. Subsequently, the Maldives Government suspended three ministers over derogatory comments against PM Modi. Now, Maldivian MP Meekail Naseem has called on Parliament to summon the Foreign Minister for questioning regarding the offensive remarks. Amid the diplomatic row over India-Maldives tourism, Israel has announced the initiation of a desalination program in Lakshadweep.
The diplomatic dispute emerged when PM Modi shared his Lakshadweep experiences, expressing gratitude to the islanders. Viral photos of Modi snorkeling, strolling on white sand, and relaxing on a pristine beach have generated significant online interest. Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s social media post has triggered a substantial increase in Google searches.