Ministry of Foreign Affairs met with the Indian Ambassador to the Maldives, Akhilesh Mishra, on Wednesday over India denying entry to a prominent lawmaker of the Maldives' ruling party.
Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM)'s parliamentary group leader and Villimale MP Ahmed Nihan had travelled to Chennai Monday night to seek medical treatment. Upon his arrival, however, Indian immigration refused him entry and, after holding him in the airport for four hours, asked him to leave on the next available flight.
Local news media Mihaaru reported that Indian Ambassador Mishra was summoned to the foreign ministry Wednesday afternoon, where he was met with Secretary, Bilateral Ahmed Khaleel.
During the meeting, the Maldivian government presented a diplomatic note to Mishra, and requested of him to explain India's reason for refusing entry to Nihan.
Maldivian Ambassador to India Ahmed Mohamed has also voiced concerns over the situation, saying that India has still not stated a reason for turning Nihan away.
Amidst recent tensions between the Maldives and India, this is the first incident where a top government official was refused entry to the South Asian neighbour.
In the wake of the development, MP Nihan had described the incident as “a bigger country bullying a smaller country”.