This evening I came home early. It was just after eight o’clock as I passed by CTrue Opticals. The owner Mr. Shareef is a good friend of mine, since our acquaintance in the Maldives Hotel and Trade Exhibition about three years ago. He was outside the shop and I stopped by to say hello to him. We talked about business and the challenges faced by small businesses in special.
A friend of Shareef, who is seemingly in his thirties walked past and made a remark, "Nizaamee nuguthaa eh ebaoiy tha? / (Is there a point of order?)" to which Shafeef said, "No, we are just talking about business. We don’t have time for other things as time does not permit!" However, his friend came back to us and started talking about the Special Majlis sessions that the public is been treated to lately on television.
According to this young man, what we were seeing was a scheme by Maumoon to discredit Gasim and rid him of the love of the people of this country that he has earned through his generosity. He said that what Gasim is doing and his decisions in his capacity as Chair of the Special Majlis were beyond his control – all orchestrated by the Grand Master Maumoon. He said that now names are being called at Gasim in the Special Majlis (and on national television); such as "Chaaru Gasim" that were all a conceived by Maumoon. He approved of the names called at Gasim and the disrespect to him, to the extent of proposing that Gasim has earned and deserved it.
I tried to tell him, despite all I would like to respect and remember Gasim for the many things that make us proud of him as a Maldivian. I tried to impress upon him (in vain, of course) that he was talking about a very short span of Gasim’s life. Unfortunately, for me, he could not be convinced. It was as if Gasim has committed blasphemy. So, I just listened to him.
A while later when he walked away I tried to tell Shareef, why I did not contest the man. Shareef said that there was no point in arguing, because they were convinced of the truth in their views, that it would be fruitless trying to convince an argument to them. We agreed that it was more important for us to make ends meet – leave the job of politics to the politicians!
So, we move on!