Victory Day in Maldives

Celebrated annually in the Republic of the Maldives, Victory Day is a holiday observed on the 3rd of November. It commemorates the defeat of an attempted coup on this date in 1988. In the Maldives, this day is celebrated as a public holiday, so most people have the day off.

It is also a day when many businesses, schools, and government agencies are closed. One of the main ceremonies of this holiday is the special flag-raising ceremony that takes place near the Victory Monument in the capital city, but there are also parades and other special events.

The History of Victory Day in the Maldives

Abdul Gayoom became president of the Maldives in 1978, right after the former president, Ibrahim Nasir, fled the country for Singapore. Nasir’s supporters tried to oust Gayoom; however, in November of 1988, they came close to succeeding. Abdullah Luthufie and 80 Tamil mercenaries seized the airport, media stations, and government buildings.

The mercenaries were unable to capture Gayoom; however, he managed to not only escape but also appeal to the world for help. On November 3rd, 1988, India initiated Operation Cactus, and the Indian Air Force airlifted troops to the Maldives. The paratroopers secured the airfield, and Gayoom once again resumed his duties as president and leader of the government. Not long after, the 3rd of November was declared a public holiday to commemorate the event.

Observing Victory Day in the Maldives

In Male and Hulhumale, as well as in other cities, there are flag-raising events and parades. People also spend time with their loved ones and enjoy traditional Maldivian cuisines such as Banana Flower Salad, Fish Soup, Sago Pudding, and Chapati Bread.

It is also a day on which the president of the country and other politicians address the general public with speeches highlighting the importance of the day.

Where is it celebrated?
Maldives (Public holiday)
When is it?
This year (2024)
November 3 Sunday
Next year (2025)
November 3 Monday
Last year (2023)
November 3 Friday