India-Based EaseMyTrip Halts Maldives Bookings Amid Diplomatic Row
Following the diplomatic rift between India and the Maldives, EaseMyTrip, a prominent Indian travel company, has decided to suspend all flight bookings to the Maldives. This decision is a direct response to the derogatory remarks made against Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi by several Maldivian ministers.
Prashant Pitti, founder of EaseMyTrip, announced the company’s decision on social media platform X. He highlighted India’s own beautiful destinations, stating, “Water & beaches of Lakshadweep are as good as Maldives/Seychelles. We at @EaseMyTrip will come up with crazy special-offers to promote this pristine destination that our PM @narendramodi has recently visited!” This statement aligns with the company’s stance that nationalism takes precedence over personal business interests.
Nishant Pitti, CEO of EaseMyTrip, confirmed the suspension of services to the Maldives in an interaction with news agency ANI. Prashant Pitti elaborated on the decision, mentioning, “…Our company is entirely homegrown and made in India. Amid the row over Maldives MP’s post on PM Modi’s visit to Lakshadweep, we have decided that we will not accept any bookings for Maldives…We want Ayodhya and Lakshadweep to turn out as international destinations…”
The movement to boycott the Maldives seems to be gaining momentum, with the Indian Association of Tour Operators anticipating a more pronounced effect of the boycott in the next 20-25 days. This sentiment is reflected in the Indian travel market, with numerous individuals on social media stating that they have cancelled their vacation plans to the Maldives.
Rajiv Mehra, president of the Indian Association of Tour Operators, told ANI, “Suddenly, there has been no inquiry on the Maldives. There are sudden drops. Those who have made payments will not cancel them. We are expecting that people will not book trips to the Maldives.”
This action by EaseMyTrip and the growing public sentiment in India could have a significant impact on the Maldivian tourism industry, which relies heavily on Indian tourists.
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