On Tuesday, January 8, Israel announced that it would begin the desalination programme in Lakshadweep. This move could further boost tourism in the Indian archipelago amidst the ongoing Maldives controversy.
“Last year, we visited Lakshadweep at the request of the federal government to start the desalination programme. Israel is prepared to start this endeavor tomorrow. These images capture the pristine and breathtaking underwater splendor of the Lakshadweep islands for those who haven’t seen them yet. The Israeli embassy posted the images on X.
The announcement comes against the backdrop of simmering diplomatic tensions between India and the Maldives over insulting remarks made by some ministers in the Mohamed Muizzu government regarding Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s post on ‘X’ after he visited Lakshadweep, implying that it was an attempt to present the Union Territory as a substitute for the Maldives.
The row intensified as numerous celebrities on ‘X’ urged Modi to explore domestic tourist destinations rather than travel to the Maldives.
To limit the harm to bilateral ties, the Muizzu government swiftly disassociated itself from the minister’s statements, describing them as their personal opinion, and suspended them. Not content with a simple suspension, the Ministry of External Affairs called the Maldivian envoy and demanded that the three ministers be fired.
Israel desalination project
Israel started desalinating water decades ago, and the process accounts for more than 35% of freshwater production. Israel has been using reverse osmosis, a technique that removes salt from water to make it safe to drink, to clean seawater it takes from the Mediterranean.
Desalinated water, however, is posing its own set of problems. A UNESCO report indicates that heart disease is associated with a diet low in magnesium. In places where desalinated water is the only supply of potable water, illness is becoming increasingly common.