Gaining Strength In Indian Ocean: Promising Probe Into Chinese Debt, Pro-India MDP Wins Majority In Maldivian Polls

Gaining Strength In Indian Ocean: Promising Probe Into Chinese Debt, Pro-India MDP Wins Majority In Maldivian PollsPrime Minister Narendra Modi with Maldivian President Ibrahim Solih (Sanjeev Verma/Hindustan Times via Getty Images)

Maldives President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih’s Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) has secured more than two-third seats in the island nation’s parliamentary elections, reports Economic Times.

According to the report, the MDP on Sunday (7 April) won 67 out of the 87 seats in the parliament, which could give Solih and former president Mohamed Nasheed, who also won a seat to the country’s legislature, a free hand in efforts to restore political freedom and tackle corruption.

"Without exception, the biggest winners of today's elections are the Maldivian people. To have this election across the country under peaceful and civil conditions is a clear win for us as a society. That our campaign was issue-oriented and not based on hatred and narrow divisions is a win for our young democracy. That our government did not hinder those candidates with whom we did not agree is a big win for the country," Solih said in a statement on Sunday (7 April), as reported by ET.

The Jamhooree Party, with just seven seats, came a distant second while pro-China former president Abdulla Yameen’s Progressive Party of Maldives reportedly secured just four seats.

MDP’s victory in parliamentary elections is being considered a shot in the arm for India in the Indian Ocean Region (IOR) as both Solih and Nasheed are considered pro-India. Besides, the party had promised voters to investigate debts to China, which it fears could run as high as $3 billion.

As per the report, increased Chinese investments and BRI designs in the Maldives had made India wary as New Delhi has been a traditional net security provider in the region.