The major dispute with India in the Maldives has been over the presence of Indian Navy fleets. There is one Dornier aircraft and two helicopters of the Indian Navy. Apart from this, these aircraft are also used to protect the vast economic zone of Maldives from illegal fishing.
Today it has become very difficult for India to find friends in its neighbourhood. Over the years, India’s relations with most of the neighboring countries have become increasingly complicated. An exception has been the Maldives, where conditions were relatively favorable for India. But there are also signs of a new headache arising. There the ‘India Out’ movement has been started, which is being led by former President Abdulla Yameen. Yameen is considered close to China. He lost the election in 2018. He was later found guilty of engaging in hawala business and misappropriating $1 billion of government funds. In 2019, Yameen was sentenced to five years for this. His prison sentence was converted into house arrest due to Kovid-19. Now in November last, all the charges against Yameen were dismissed and he was released. This also cleared the way for him to do politics again. Days after Yameen was released, the ‘India Out’ movement started gaining momentum.
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Yameen’s Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM) is leading the movement. Now this campaign is also gaining a lot of discussion on social media. Pictures of Yameen’s supporters wearing red T-shirts are going viral on many platforms. ‘India out’ is written on these t-shirts. Earlier this month, the PPM had said that Yameen would travel across the country to strengthen the campaign to protest the “presence of Indian troops in the archipelago surrounded by the Indian Ocean”. Maldivian President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih denies that the Indian Army is present in the country. He described India as his “closest ally and reliable neighbour”. But Yameen supporters are not ready to believe this. The major dispute with India in the Maldives has been over the presence of Indian Navy fleets. There is one Dornier aircraft and two helicopters of the Indian Navy. Apart from this, these aircraft are also used to protect the vast economic zone of Maldives from illegal fishing. But opposition leaders say the presence of foreign forces is an insult to the sovereignty of the Maldives.