Monday, March 1, 2021

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Maldives Threatening Indian Security; Invites Pakistan for Key Power Project

India-Maldives Relations are only deteriorating with time, and Male has started to pose new security concerns for India. The Maldives-Pakistan Power Deal which the Maldives has agreed upon is the latest in the series of ignorance portrayed by the Maldives towards India. This shall further dent the India-Maldives relations. Is this a bid to topple India’s expanse in the Maldives? How will India react to Pakistan cosying up with Male, in India’s backyard?

After denying work permits to Indians, and then snubbing India on the helicopters, now the Maldives has joined hands with Pakistan to sign a capacity building agreement with Islamabad. Officials from the state electricity company of Maldives, Stelco visited Pakistan and signed a memorandum of understanding pertaining to cooperation in institution-building activities.

This deal comes at a crucial time when Male has turned a blind eye towards India. Indians are being denied work permits and Indian projects in the Maldives are being put on ice. What does this inclination of Male towards Islamabad mean for New Delhi?

Pakistan Cannot Do Much For Maldives: India

An Indian official stated that Male is trying to reduce the Indian footprint by incorporating forces which are hostile to India. The official said that President Yameen is trying to diminish the influence of India on the Maldives by joining hands with Pakistan. India stated that given the financially strategic significance of the Maldives, Pakistan cannot do much for the Maldives given its financial constraints.

Security Concerns for India

The authorities in India believe that Pakistani officials being present in the Maldives shall trigger covert intelligence modules. These modules are expected to target India and hence raise security concerns for New Delhi. The Maldives has also denied India’s offer for a  Dornier aircraft given the fact that Pakistan has made a similar offer to the Maldives. This inclination of the Maldives towards Pakistan yet another low in India’s dwindling foreign policy.

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