Maldives

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By: Waheed
Maldives: The World Highest Divorce Rate.

A tradition inherited from forefathers.

In the middle of vast indian ocean, the islands of Maldives, remained as a wonder, a resting place, and a  stop over for exhausted sailors. The crystal clear water and fine white sandy beaches, though defines the modern day Maldives, the islands were well known among the sailors and traders of indian ocean for its beauty and hospitality since 14th century. Today, world knows Maldives as a  high end tourist destination for affluent Europeans.

However, the latest surveys and 800 years old written history of the Maldives reveal a startling fact about lifestyle of the islanders. The history written by various eyewitnesses and sailors over the last hundreds of years have one uncontentious account on Maldivian lifestyle, especially on marriage.

According to Ibn Battuta, a renowned 15th century Moroccan sailor, “It is easy to marry in these islands because of the smallness of the dowries and the pleasures of society which the women offer. When the ships put in, the crew marry; when they intend to leave, they divorce their wives”.  The divorce and remarry was part of everyday life of the Maldivians.  Battuta himself took pleasure marrying with local women. He wrote, “In these islands, I married several women;"

It would be normal  for a Maldivian woman to have lived in several different houses with each marriage taking her to a new dwelling. In this journey she would normally take her children from previous marriages with her to the new dwelling. There she lives with her new husband with children from several other previous husbands until she get divorced again.

The religion and culture of the country has privileged the men, giving them the right to divorce.The women have little or no right to divorce their husband. In most cases, it is a verbal statement that husband reads to his wife in the presence of her or any other person, willing to divorce her which then...
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