Underlining India’s ‘Neighbourhood First Policy’, Union Minister Kiren Rijiju on Friday represented the country at the swearing-in ceremony of Mohammed Muizzu as the new President of Maldives and met the new President and extended India’s best wishes to him. . In this regard, Earth Sciences Minister Kiren Rijiju said in a post on It is a matter of good fortune.” Rijiju said in another post on ‘X’, ”I am honored to meet Sri Lankan President Ranil Wickremesinghe. Discussed India-Sri Lanka bilateral relations, which is multidimensional and a priority under the ‘Neighborhood First’ and ‘SAGAR’ policy of Honorable Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Apart from this, Rijiju also visited major connectivity projects funded by India in Maldives. Let us tell you that under the ‘Greater Male Connectivity Project’ (GMCP) project, a 6.74 km long bridge and causeway link will be constructed to connect the capital city Male with the adjacent islands of Villingli, Gulhifalhu and Thilafushi. Rijiju posted on Twitter, “Happy to see the progress of GMCP’s work in Maldives. This project is being constructed under the concessional loan and grant facility of the Government of India and is expected to bring economic development and prosperity to the Greater Malé region. Let us tell you that this project is being implemented with a grant of US$ 100 million provided by India. The project is financed by grants and a Line of Credit (NOC) of US$ 400 million. Additionally, Rijiju met Seychelles Vice President Ahmed Arif and discussed multifaceted bilateral relations.
Let us also tell you that India’s Ambassador to Maldives Munu Mahavar had met Mohammad Muizzu last month and handed him Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s greetings message. He had said that India is eager to have meaningful discussions with the new leadership of Maldives to further advance bilateral relations.
As far as the swearing-in program is concerned, let us tell you that engineer-turned-politician Mohammed Muizzu took oath as the eighth President of Maldives on Friday in the presence of many foreign personalities including Kiren Rijiju. Mohammad Muizzu (45) took the oath of office at a special meeting of the ‘People’s Majlis’. Chief Justice Muthasim Adnan administered the oath of office to Muizzu. At this ceremony, Hussain Mohammed Latheef was sworn in as the 10th Vice President of the Maldives. Along with Mohammed Muizzu, his wife Sajida Mohammed was also present on the occasion. Apart from former President Ibrahim Mohammad Solih from the outgoing administration, many top leaders of the country including two other former Presidents Mohammad Nasheed and Dr. Mohammad Waheed were also present in this program. According to ‘Sun’ newspaper, senior officials and MPs of the outgoing and new administrations and 1,000 common people attended the programme.
Apart from Rijiju, leaders of neighboring countries of South Asia who attended the event included Sri Lankan President Ranil Wickremesinghe and his wife Maithri Wickremesinghe, Bangladesh Information Minister Hasan Mahmood, Pakistan’s Federal Information and Broadcasting and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Murtaza Solangi and Seychelles. Vice President Ahmed Afif and Special Envoy of the Chinese President and State Councilor Shen Yiqin were also present.
According to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Maldives, Abdullah bin Sultan bin Awad Al Nuaimi, Minister of Justice of the United Arab Emirates, Armida Salsiyah Alisjahbana, Under-Secretary-General of UNESCAP, Patricia Scotland Casey, Secretary-General of the Commonwealth of Nations, and Mehmet Nuri Ersay, Minister of Culture and Tourism of Turkey, also attended the ceremony. joined in. Let us also tell you that the members of Mohammad Muizzu’s cabinet will take oath in the office of the President tonight. After this, Muizzu will hand over appointment letters to top officials in the President’s office.
Let us tell you that Mohammad Muizzu had defeated his predecessor Ibrahim Mohammad Solih, who was pro-India, in the elections held in September. Muizzoo is a close aide of former Maldives President Abdulla Yameen. Yameen established close ties with China during his tenure as president from 2013 to 2018. Talking about Muizzu’s educational qualification, let us tell you that he obtained a master’s degree in ‘Structural Engineering’ from the University of London. He later obtained a PhD in Civil Engineering from the University of Leeds.
However, the election of Muizzoo, considered pro-China and a close aide of former Maldives President Abdulla Yameen, has raised hopes in China that the island nation, located strategically in the Indian Ocean off India’s southern coast, will pursue policies in its support. . Let us tell you that during his tenure as the President of Maldives, Ibrahim Mohammed Solih followed the policy of ‘India first’ and established close relations with India. But now there is a lot of excitement in China with a pro-China person becoming the President. That is why in his greeting message, Xi Jinping said that there is a long history of friendly exchanges between China and Maldives.