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Adeeb in India for medical treatment

Home minister assured parliament Adeeb will return on June 26.



Former vice president Ahmed Adeeb left for Bangalore on Friday after being granted medical leave to seek treatment for glaucoma.

A video tweeted by one of his supporters shows Adeeb and his wife entering the VIP lounge of the airport on Friday.

He has been given a temporary travel document valid for one year.

But Home Minister Sheikh Imran Abdulla said Adeeb planned to return to the Maldives on June 26, unless doctors recommend otherwise.

The government’s decision last week to grant Adeeb medical leave incensed the public, who fear he might abscond. But Imran told the parliamentary national security committee that there was “no chance” Adeeb could escape.

“I want to assure the Maldivian people that, with the grace of God, police and corrections [officers] will not [give] Adeeb a single chance to escape.

“Unless there are additional recommendations from doctors, he will return on 26th.”

Adeeb is accompanied by three police officers and three corrections officers, Police Commissioner Mohamed Hameed told the committee.

An advance team, including two of the three police officers and an assistant police commissioner, travelled one day before to check out the hospital and hotel where Adeeb will be staying, and to coordinate with the Indian authorities, he added.

When asked by a committee member how confident he was Adeeb could not escape on a “scale of 1 to 10”, Hameed said “I am very certain – it is a 10. Based on these arrangements, I am very certain it is in our control. He cannot flee.”

Senior immigration official Moosa Zameer said the temporary travel document issued Adeeb authorises the former vice president to make a single round trip to India, even though it’s valid for a year.

It is the minimum temporary travel document the department issues, he said.

Home Minister Imran said investigations involving Adeeb were ongoing. “Police have got more leads in the past four months, more than they had in the past four years,” Imran said.

“These investigations were close to being prosecuted. At this stage, he has been suddenly freed. The home ministry, police or corrections [Maldives Correctional Service] cannot be held responsible for that.

“We weren’t negligent or careless. We are doing our duty.”

Adeeb had his total 33-year jail sentence wiped out by the Supreme and High Courts in May.

However, he still has the remainder of a 15-day contempt of court sentence to serve. The sentence was due to end on June 18, but his time in India will not be counted as time served, Commissioner of Prisons Abdulla Munaz told the parliament committee.