NEW DELHI: Former Maldives President Mohamed Nasheed on Wednesday revealed that after his resignation, he had been approached by some disgruntled military officials to launch a counter-coup, which he robustly refused.
He also made no bones of his unhappiness with Indian high commissioner in Male Dnyaneshwar M Mulay for precipitating the international community’s recognition of the new regime in Maldives.
Nasheed is in India for the first time after he was resigned on February 7 and handed over power to vice-president Mohamed Waheed. The Indian Government, followed by the US, immediately recognised Waheed’s Government, but Nasheed, and his party (the MDP) have been since agitating against it describing his removal as a coup. Nasheed revealed that the military in Maldives, Maldives National Defence Forces (MNDF), had been divided over the opposition against him.
“On the day of the coup, a third of the military were on leave. They were given a month’s leave. After they came back from leave, they thought if they can bring back the (earlier) situation,” he said at a interaction organised by Delhi-based think tank Observer Research Foundation.
“No, I did not consider (it). I told the two general and the few other officers, do not waste your time. I don’t believe that any government should be formed through brute force,” he said.
Nasheed, the first democratically elected president in the Indian ocean island nation, said that he was “shocked” at the speed of Indian government’s recognition to the present government. A day after he stepped down, the Indian Prime Minister had spoken to new President Waheed and given its recognition, stating that the transfer of power was constitutional.
He said that he had met the high commissioner Mulay at the Indian Republic Day celebrations.
“But, he never mentioned anything to me how wrong I was leading (the nation). Of course there were issues. I am not claiming that I am an angel… But, is this any better. I don’t think this is,” said Nasheed.
He urged India to press upon the Maldives government to conduct presidential elections at the earliest.
He said that if the elections were not held soon, Islamic radicals would gain ground.
“If Maldives gets into the hands of Islamic radicals, it will not only pose a threat to Maldivians, but also to other nations of the region and to the enormous maritime trade that passes through the shipping lanes close to Maldives,” he said.
He noted that three months before the coup, he had rejected a Chinese investment proposal of $1.4 billion in the Island nation.
Though he said that there was no evidence of external influences on the coup, Nasheed was emphatic that former president Maumoon Abdul Gayoom was “back in power” as the main mastermind behind the events.
Asked if his decision to arrest the chief judge was wise, Nasheed agreed though it “was not nice”, he had no alternative due to several complaints of corruption and irregularities against the judge.Source: Express Buzz