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MP files police complaint over tabloid attacks

The Maafannu-Uthuru lawmaker and MDP spokesman urged police to investigate Vaguthu Online over three articles.



MP Imthiyaz Fahmy has filed a police complaint over  articles on a pro-government tabloid site that he claims could put his life at risk, local media has reported.

The Maafannu-Uthuru lawmaker urged police to investigate Vaguthu Online over three articles about him, according to Vnews.

Vaguthu claimed the parliamentarian had called for Buddhism in the Maldives and that he had opposed the death penalty even though Islam permitted it. Fahmy said Vaguthu published comments he had never made or omitted the full story in a deliberate attempt to target him.

In a letter to Police Commissioner Ahmed Arif he said inciting hatred towards someone over religion exposed them to protests or violence and was therefore a criminal offence.

“Vaguthu news is infamous for editing and removing from their articles once published. I note that they’ve re-published, edited and changed the articles they’ve written about me after attaining the goals the newspaper wanted even momentarily, which is to spew discord and hatred by deliberately twisting my words,” he added.

Fahmy, who is also spokesman for the main opposition MDP, said people had been abducted or killed due to religiously-incited hatred and that he had received multiple death threats since the articles appeared.

He did not want to use the Defamation Act to have the articles investigated because he believed this law to be unconstitutional, he said.

Last week, Vaguthu was blasted by human rights defender Shahindha Ismail for deliberately twisting her words and putting her life at risk.