Wednesday 28th Jul 2021
Dhivehi Edition
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Minicoy

“Pray for Us!”, Says Citizens of Maliku

The Vice President of Minicoy Village Dweep Panchayat, Dr. Muneer Manikfan has urged the citizens of Maldives to include the people of Minicoy, also known as Maliku, in their prayers.
Taking to Facebook, Dr. Muneer stated that these are the darkest, most terrifying days the people of Maliku have ever had to face. He then called on Maldivians to include the people of Maliku in their fervent duas, as the people of Maldives and that of Maliku are of the same race and ethnicity.
The central Indian government is currently committing many inhuman acts of violence in Lakshadweep, to which Maliku belongs.

What is going on in Lakshadweep?

For the past few days, a social media campaign which aims to bring to light the atrocious and autocratic decisions and actions taken by the region’s Delhi appointed Administrator Praful Patel and uses the hashtag #SaveLakshadweep has been trending.
Patel has given himself the power and authority to expel the people of the islands from their homes and lands under the guise of the newly minted Lakshadweep Development Regulation. Patel has also introduced a new law by the name of ‘Prevention of Anti-Social Activities Act’, through which he has also given himself the authority to detain any citizens without any public disclosure for a period of up to one year.
Patel has also decreed that the schools of Lakshadweep must only serve vegetarian food on their lunch menus – an absurd commandment in a region where 97 percent of the population is Muslim, and where most people depend on the sea and on marine life for sustenance.
Many citizens of Lakshadweep also accuse that Patel scrapped most of the standard operating procedures put in place to combat the spread of Covid-19, and that his revised policies are actually facilitating the spread of the virus on the islands. For instance, he changed the rule that allows people to quarantine against the virus in their homes. It is noteworthy that Lakshadweep recorded its first case of Covid-19 after Patel took over as Administrator.
Many on social media have expressed their fears and concerns that Lakshadweep will become a second Kashmir, and that the policies of the Indian government are stoking discontent and sentiments of animosity and hatred among the citizens of the islands. Some accuse that the new policies and regulations put in place in Lakshadweep are aimed at forcing a shift in the region's demography and decreasing the Muslim population.