NEW DELHI: Despite Maldives's stated 'India First' policy, China will remain the elephant in the room when PM Narendra Modi seeks to address the issue of political instability in the archipelago in a meeting with visiting President Abdulla Yameen on Monday.
While the meeting will come days after inauguration of construction work for a Chinese-funded expansion of the international airport, more worrying for India are reports that the Maldives could allow China to build a port in the southern part of the country - in Laamu atoll - directly impinging India's interests in the Indian Ocean region.
Talking to TOI, former Maldives foreign minister Ahmed Naseem said while the government had not yet confirmed it, there were indications that Maldives was looking to let the Chinese build a port at Gaadhoo island in the southern atoll.
Let's get real, we all know that China has both speed and capital, the two fronts where we lag a lot. If India works and improves these two, there's no reason why our neighbors would go to China and not India.
candu with time
When the issue of potable water came we (India) air dropped so that people don't go thirsty. If the sea port is the priority for Maldives, then by all means let them run to their sugar Daddy.
Ayush Jha - Mumbai - 4 hours ago
I agree. Only the bhakts believe in what their god pharts. The reality is that we have no muscle power (financial and military) as compared China. We don't become a great nation by talking big.
India no longer have influence, not even hold any value among neighboring small countries like Maldives, SriLanka or Nepal.
Nobody is taking India serious. Not even our Mr. Modi. There must be something wrong with our politics and with our politicians.
It takes india leaders 20 years to make a descision , no country can wait that long
China is clearly winning this battle in the indian neighbourhood ! and our MEA and Modiji will have to think out of box and leave out dramatics n histrionics off and go real n show progress ! so far it was hype and slides !
Instead of being reactive always, can we be pro active for a change?
China is the new global power. Any questions? No?
Our touring PM has visited mostly all the countries, but has forgotten this very vital cog in the Indian Ocean.
There are US naval fleets around, what happens, nothing
PremAnand aka Ed Drw
build port is equivalent to having a base as they will come in pretext to maintain. this cannot be allowed and needs to be discussed with super-powers. but what instruments does india have to stop this..Will china make it easy to build port in islands near china.