Indians Rethink Maldives Vacations Amidst Anti-Modi Remarks by Maldivian minister, Mariyam Shiuna
Find out why Indians are thinking twice about Maldives vacations due to tensions over anti-Modi comments. Learn how it affects travel plans.
Reports suggest that many Indians are reconsidering their vacation plans to the Maldives following a diplomatic dispute. This stems from critical comments made by a Maldivian minister, Mariyam Shiuna, directed at Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The hashtag 'BoycottMaldives' is gaining popularity on social media in India, indicating a reluctance to travel to a destination where anti-Indian sentiments are expressed.
On Twitter, an individual stated, "I had a vacation planned to the Maldives in February, but I'm canceling it. I'll choose a domestic destination instead. I won't spend my money where there is hostility towards my country."
Another person shared regrets about a recent Maldives trip, expressing, "I gifted my niece a honeymoon package, but considering the ongoing issues, I've asked my agent to cancel it. Even though I'll lose money, I believe it's the right decision."
The controversy began when Mariyam Shiuna allegedly made derogatory remarks about PM Modi on Twitter, referring to him as a 'clown' and a 'puppet of Israel.' While screenshots of the tweet circulate on social media, its authenticity remains unverified, as it appears to be deleted. Additionally, claims of hotel and flight booking cancellations could not be independently confirmed.
Mariyam Shiuna, Deputy Minister of Youth Empowerment, Information and Arts, had tweeted this. After backlash on X, and rightly so, she was forced to delete this abusive and hateful tweet. She is however standing up for her Country because she loves her Country and hates PM Modi.… pic.twitter.com/M4M182BR1R — Rupa Murthy (@rupamurthy1) January 7, 2024
Criticism from Maldivian citizens followed, with some condemning Shiuna for her perceived childish behavior. Former Maldives President Mohamed Nasheed expressed disapproval of Shiuna's language and urged the government to distance itself from such comments, emphasizing the importance of India as a key ally.
What appalling language by Maldives Government official @shiuna_m towards the leader of a key ally, that is instrumental for Maldives’ security and prosperity. @MMuizzu gov must distance itself from these comments and give clear assurance to India they do not reflect gov policy. — Mohamed Nasheed (@MohamedNasheed) January 7, 2024
As tensions escalate, the impact on the Maldives' tourism industry, heavily reliant on Indian visitors, remains uncertain.