Thinadhoo (Gaafu Dhaalu Atoll) - Thinadhoo Genocide 1962

Thinadhoo Genocide 1962

This island was formerly known as Havaru Thinadhoo and it was the traditional seat of the Atoll Chief. When in 1573 AD Muhammad Thakurufaanu Al Auzam captured Malé and went on a journey to South of Maldives and visited Thinadhoo to see them practicing Buddhism. Bodu Thakurufaanu convinced the people to become Muslims. Some days later a calamity befell the island as all new borns were dying, with the advice of a women from Rahadhoo who said this would not have happened if you have lived as you lived before the people re-converted to Buddhism. On learning this, Bodu Thakurufaanu sent the Milita known as 'Havaru' which was based in Malé and composed of the following six divisions Dhoshimeynaa Varu, Velaanaa Varu, Hakuraa Varu this is the Is Thinvaru and the latter Fas Thinvaru is Maafaiy Varu, Dhaharaa Varu and Faamuladheyri Varu.

This 'Havaru' went to Thinadhoo and recaptured the island after much bloodshed. Havaru returned to Malé and for their victory Muhammad Thakurufaanu Al Auzam gave them the island of Thinadhoo, He ordered that the 'dhandu kolhu, 'medhu ruganddu' and 'Baraaseel' to be given to Havaru along with the islands of Thinadhoo Maafushi, Kaadedhdhoo and Kuddu. When 'havaru' was given these six properties they let them to the people of Thinadhoo under the Vaaru system. Each year Thinadhoo people have to send the annual Varuvaa to the 'Havaru' based in Male'. This practice lasted from then onwards to the sultanate of Muhammad Mueenuddeen I who was the sultan of the Maldives from 1798 to 1835.

This practice was abolished by the orders of Prime Minister Ibrahim Nasir.

In 4 February 1962 Havaru Thinadhoo was completely destroyed on the orders of Prime Minister Ibrahim Nasir to end the separatist movement of the United Suvadive Republic. The islanders were told to go to the shallow reef, where they were forced to stand for hours in water up to their necks. Meanwhile all houses were destroyed, all wells broken and filled with rubble, all trees were cut down and much property was looted while the islanders watched. The island was then depopulated and its people dispersed. Women and children were raped in front of their families. Between 200 and 300 prisoners were taken back to Malé, where they were tortured and most killed.

The 4800 residents of Thinadhoo at the time were forced to flee to nearby islands where most were subject to maltreatment. It was said that settlers in Vadhoo had to trade gold for a handful of rice. In almost all the islands to which they dispered the numbers were declining.

Havaru Thinadhoo was resettled on the 22nd August 1966 by 1800 people. 440 households were rebuilt. Unofficial death count is estimated to be over 2,400. Those of the dead were anonymously buried by the Ibrahim Nasir's government without notice.

The name of this island was changed from Havaru Thinadhoo to Thinadhoo on 27 June 1979.

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