Police make four additional arrests in Yoga Day violence, including Sheikh Nishan

Al-Sheikh Adam Nishan bin Ali Adam.

Maldives Police Service on Wednesday made four additional arrests in connection to the mob attack on the Yoga Day event at the national football stadium, including Al-Sheikh Adam Nishan bin Ali Adam.

The event, organized by the Indian Cultural Center and the Sports Ministry, had begun at 06:30 am on Tuesday, and was attended by dozens of participants, including foreign ambassadors and diplomats.

A mob of angry protestors had stormed the stadium, and threatened and assaulted some of the participants, and destroyed property.

Rioters storm the national football stadium during an event held to celebrate International Day of Yoga on June 21, 2022. (Photo/Twitter/Shiuna)

A police spokesperson told Sun that three suspects were arrested in connection to the case on Wednesday evening. They are; Nishan, Al-Sheikh Fazloon bin Mohamed and former Hoarafushi MP Mohamed Ismail – a top official at the Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM).

Nishan was arrested from his apartment in Rehendhi apartment complex, while Mohamed Ismail was arrested from the Lavender Café located in the Alimas Carnival area.

PPM activist Mohamed Razzan was also arrested Wednesday night – bringing the total number of arrests on Wednesday to four.

Six suspects were arrested in connection to the case on Tuesday. They are:

  • Mohamed Nadheem, 43, Venus, K. Thulusdhoo
  • Mohamed Zilyan, 37, Ma. Kanuhura, K. Male’
  • Shaamy Rasheed Idrees, 30, Dhafthar No. 1105, K. Male’
  • Mohamed Mausoom, 40, Happy Side, Th. Madifushi
  • Mohamed Hussain, 47, Greenhouse, HA. Thuraakunu
  • Ameen Ahmed, 35, Lily Park, GDh. Rathafandhoo

They were presented before the Criminal Court for their remand hearing on Wednesday morning.

Combined photos of (clockwise from L-R) Shaamy Rasheed Idrees, 30; Mohamed Zilyan, 37; Mohamed Nadheem, 43; Mohamed Mausoom, 40; Mohamed Hussain, 47; and Ameen Ahmed, 35. (Photo/Maldives Police Service)

Mohamed Nadheem, Mohamed Mausoom, Mohamed Hussain and Ameen Ahmed were remanded in custody of police for 60 days, while Mohamed Zilyan and Shaamy Rasheed Idrees were remanded in custody of police for five days.

The mob attack on the yoga event is under investigation by the Serious and Organized Department.

Police said in an earlier statement the case was being investigated as a serious matter, and that preliminary investigative findings established that some of the items used by the mob had come from the office of PPM.

In a TV interview following the incident, Sports Minister Ahmed Mahloof said Maldives began celebrating the International Day of Yoga during the administration of former president Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom – the leader of PPM. He alleged the disruption of the event was politically motivated, and accused both PPM and Jamiyyath Salaf of involvement in the incident.

Both PPM and Salaf have issued statements denying involvement.