Overdoing in obeisance

taking a break!

Resort workers in general know to keep their bearings about in dealing with the guests. Our resorts are without exception, always at a class of its own and the guests expect differential treatment. The staff generally are courteous and un-interruptive. Yet the pressure from modern managements is such that its not infrequent that staff are required to be more talkative and more inquisitive of guests. With an artificially broad smile and asking about how the day went with the guest is a requirement which directly affects the career. In short, the more persistent, talkative and aggressive the staff, the chances of him or her being promoted to the next step in the ladder is greater.

However the effect of this artificiality immediately gets what it deserve, sometimes in the form of negative hotel reviews such as in the popular travel advisory site:Trip Advisor

Here is an extract of such a review from a big  collection of guest reviews of various resorts from Trip Advisor site which illustrate this point.

“The staff kept coming out of the wood work asking us if everything was to our satisfaction. Ok, this fine once or twice but when it happens seven and eight times during a meal, you feel like you want to feed them to the sharks. The staff were so hypocritical that it was written all over their faces that they really didn’t give a damn although they kept asking us how our day was. After a week, we wanted to chuck them into the flaming Tandoori oven.”

Workers remittance

Money earned by workers a part of which subsequently is sent back home is an important factor of economies in most countries. Remittance works as both in and outflows to the country. Here in Maldives, the government is simply content in having the economy generate just two inputs to cover for all the expenses of the government, namely through fisheries and tourism. With the recent tax laws, the government will be creating a third input to generate income for the government through the restructuring process of the economy.

2005 2006 2007 Remittances as a share of GDP, 2007 (%)
Maldives 70 84 103
Sri Lanka 257 283 314 1.0%
India 1,341 1,580 1,580 0.1%
Bangladesh 5 3 3 0.0%
Nepal 66 79 4 0.0%
Philippines 15 20 35 0.0%
Thailand .. .. ..

The major outflow of cash from Maldives by the locals are to medical tourism in India and Sri Lanka together with the educational expenses for students staying abroad. The major outflow remittance from expatriate workers are of course to their parent countries.

2005 2006 2007 2008e Remittances as a share of GDP, 2007 (%)
Maldives 2 3 3 3
Sri Lanka 1,991 2,185 2,527 2,720 8.1%
India 21,293 25,426 35,262 45,000 3.1%
Bangladesh 4,314 5,428 6,562 8,979 9.5%
Nepal 1,212 1,453 1,734 2,254 15.5%
Philippines 13,566 15,251 16,291 18,268 11.6%
Thailand 1,187 1,333 1,635 1,800 0.7%

Because of the importance of workers remittance to the economy, most economies of the world seek to maximize the benefit from workers and their input to the economy. A typical worker who works in a resort is no less beneficial to the economy of his island than an established business at his home island or atoll. The only difference is the form of the business, ie; the worker is not a building but a human being…

Migration improves business profitability and reduces the costs of production, but an unregulated unchecked labour force (such as the one which is existing in the country at the present) is already causing harm to the local economy.

Workers’ remittances, compensation of employees, and migrant transfers, credit (US$ million)

The above tables are constructed with data from the http://blogs.worldbank.org site

While celebrating tourism week…

Apart from the usual nonsensical agendas to commemorate public events, the official calendar of events for the tourism day is devoid of any thing of substance which can benefit either the workers or the employers.

Here is a list of some events which are on agenda for the week and our commentary on the events.

Presidential Address : An opportunity for the president to feel good about himself and his good office.. say a few kind words to the employers and a fewer condescending words of advice to workers.

Tourism Day Supplement : Another useless piece of literature compiled somewhere in the tourism ministry

Cultural Performances: Boduberu and some old unheard of forms of music.. and more traditional music. The sound of music!

Museum Week : Inspecting old stones and (supposedly) important looking documents, furniture etc.

Photo exhibition for public : who need photos when there is flicker?Maybe a good idea for the old former workers and former employers to feel good about nostalgia of when they were in resorts..

Art competition for students : Art by definition is aristocratic. Its for the affluent, for those who can afford to be useless. A developing nation needs people who can work, engineers, craftsmen, doctors, scientists,teachers, waiters, housekeepers etc.

TV Quiz: Most of our TV quiz’s go like this: Which date was this resort or that resort opened? Its more about remembering dry numbers rather than the context.

Cultural Performance : Boduberu again!

7 wonders voting : somebody answer this:Where is the moral satisfaction of artificial y raising our country’s own ratings?

Industry employees awareness prog@ no: 1 Jetty (dispute minimization) : good one! We need this. Everybody needs this.

Panel Discussion (Tourism & Biodiversity) : very likely to be a voluminous useless talk by some boffins the purpose of which might be to prove who talks more..

MNBC Inter resort Boduberu competition (Launching) : Boduberu again!

Awareness lectures about Tourism & Biodiversity : Awareness much needed . But wouldn’t it be a good idea to make the employers more aware of workers rights? They apparently lack a healthy doze of this.

Clean-up programme : PR stunt for tourism ministry officials and politicians.

Exposure Trips (Parents & Students) : good idea.

School essay competition: rather than have the students write about how white the resort’s beaches are, it would be a good idea to expose the students to challenges working in tourism sector which ultimately is where most of the students be a few years from now.

Meanwhile at Alila Villas Hadaha there is a report of mass resignation of staff  in protest: The story can be read here at Minivan News

Brands in the country

Here are some resort brand names in the country. Some resorts like Gaakoshibee by Mariot, Kandooma by Holiday Inn are working against time to finish the construction project to open the resort in earnest by 2010 or earlier. Still there are re-branded resorts like Zitahli and Adaaran which is only a name change and nothing else.

Alila Villas Hadaha
Anantara Boduhuraa, Dhigufinolhu, Veligandu huraa, Kihaavah (shortly opening)
Banyan Tree Ihuru & Vabbinfaru & Madivaru &  velavaru:
Best Western Madoogali
Centara Machafushi
Club Med Kani
Como Hotels and Resorts Cocoa (Makunufushi)
Constance Moofushi & Halaveli
Four seasons Landaa Giraavaru & Kuda Huraa:
Hilton Irufushi & Rangali
Holiday Inn Kandooma & Holiday Inn Male’
Jumeirah (opening in 2010) Bolifushi / Meradhoo
Kerzner ReethiRah
Marriot (opening in 2011) Gaakoshibee
Naide Dhidhoofinolhu
Robinson Club Funamaudda (huvandhumaafushi)
Shangri La Vilingili
Sheraton Fullmoon:
Six senses Kunfunadhoo (Sonevafushi) &laamu & Gili
Taj (coral now vivanta) & Emboodhoo finolhu (exotica)
W Fesdu
Waldof Astoria -Beach House Manafaru

Jumeirah is hiring now

Jumeirah Maldives is developing two resorts in the country both of which are in the last stages of construction. The resorts are expected to open in this season and the hiring has already begun.

Jumeirah Vittaveli Maldives, (formerly Boiliffushi) will have:
39 Beach Villas,
10 Beach Suites,
21 Lagoon Villas,
17 Lagoon Suites,
and 3 Presidential Suites.
as well as restaurants and everything else other resorts has.

Jumeirah Dhevanafushi is actually Meradhoo in Gdh which is also gearing up to be completed this year possibly for high season. The resort has 36 beautiful villas, located on beach and water.

Room classes:
8 Beach Revives,
11 Island Revives,
14 Ocean Revives
1 Island Sanctuary
1 Ocean Sanctuary

The positions open to be applied (in both resorts) are:

Administration & Support
Assistant Human Resources Manager
Human Resources Executive & Administrators
Assistant Training Manager
Training Coordinator & Executive
English Teacher
IT Administrator & IT Systems Manager

All Levels!
Stewarding Supervisor

Technical Supervisors
Technicians – Carpenters/ Electricians/AC/ Mechanical
Labourers – Maintenance & Odd Jobbing
Gardeners & Supervisors

Outlet Managers
Team Leaders
Waiters/Waitresses & Guest Relations Executives
Bar Manager & Team Supervisors
Bar Tenders & Sommelier
Sheesha Maker

Accountants &Finance Executives
Auditors (receiving, income audit)
Cost Controller & Payroll Executives
Purchasing Coordinator
Stores Manager & Storekeepers

Front Office
Night Manager
Team Leaders
Butlers & Bell Attendants
Guest Services Executives & Guest Service Retail Assistants

Housekeeping Manager & Assistant Manager
Housekeeping Coordinator & Team Leaders
Housekeeping Attendants & Cleaners
Laundry Assistant Manager
Laundry Attendants / Team Leaders

Sales & Marketing
Reservations Sales Agents
Business Development Coordinator

Security Guards
Security Manager

Spa, Sports & Leisure
Spa Manager & Supervisor
Spa Attendants & Spa Coordinator
Therapists & Senior Therapists
Beautician & Hair Stylists
Guest Services Executives
Fitness Instructors Yoga or Gym
Kids Club Attendants & Coordinator
Beach Butlers & Lifeguards
Boat Captains & Crew

All applications should be emailed with a CV to HRmaldives@jumeirah.com.
Closing date for applications: 6pm on 27th September 2010.
Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted for an interview. For further information on Jumeirah, visit http://www.jumeirah.com


When they are right, even when wrong…

Maldives Association for Tourism Industry has an interesting Operating Guideline: It reads “The member is right, even when s/he is wrong!”. This is an interesting operating guideline which pretty well sums up MATI. The association also has a 5 point agenda the first one of which is resort lease period extension.. To all extents MATI seems to have achieved the first point in the agenda with the government agreeing to extend the existing lease period of the resorts to 50 years if the resort agrees to pay a sum of money. Currently all resorts has individual land lease agreements with government which were drawn up as was when needed, hence the conditions were favourable for the first batch of resorts and gradually got tougher for the latest batch of resorts.

The goods and services tax bill (3.5%) was heavily fought over in the parliament, by the opposition and the government and all sides made concessions to others. That much was apparent from the media. But what was not apparent was the involvement of MATI the resort owners club which cut a deal with the government to extend the existing resort leases. The government has agreed to the cartel’s demand upon the resorts paying a further 100000$ dollar per resort per year for the extension. Now the important question that comes to mind is what sort of leverage the cartel has over the political process? Other than pledges or promises of campaign funding what more leverage does the resort owner’s cartel have? What was the big need for the government to cut a deal with the resort owners over the tax bill in the first place? These are tough questions needing straight answers nobody seems to have.

The Goods and Services Tax is currently only a framework of laws which requires further regulations and by-laws for the process to work, which are still in the process of formation. GST law requires implementation by January 1st next year by which time the by-laws in and in-laws should in theory be in place.. MATI is sounding out the lack of these very regulations as an excuse to delay the process and asking to delay the GST implementation. The government expects the regulations to come through parliament by November.

The reasons MATI gives for delaying the GST implementations are many and they include the following:

  1. that the resorts need time to upgrade theirs accounting softwares
  2. that the existing bed tax  is still  to continue for further 3 years
  3. that the resorts are obliged under the new pension laws to deposit 7% of staff salary for pensions, which will be required to be implemented on May the next year. MATI sees an issue with this saying that expatriate workers are short term employed and this requirement is unworkable. However labour law does not differentiate between local and  expatriate staff on the issue of worker contract, so MATI’s  concern over this issue is unfounded. I.e. both the local and expatriates are short term (1 or 2 year) employed in legal speak.
  4. MATI reminds another bill income tax is also in the offing
  5. The unavailability of English translations of the GST bill is also an issue with MATI which is in the process of being translated.

None of the points MATI raises seems to warrant delaying the implantation of GST (3.5%) for a whole one year which is one fifth of a presidential term in office. With MDP pressed to show success on election pledges, its unlikely that the government will want to add any further delays to the GST which in the first place was heavily delayed by the opposition dominated Majlis.

Given the fact that various forms of taxation is coming to the country with popular backing, to stay for good, MATI is clearly out of the line and its understandable. Its understandable since the cartel consists of roughly a handful of ‘resort-barons’ who owns the most expensive real estate properties in the country and who are in their own words “ right, even when they are wrong!” which brings to mind and important fact that democracy cannot be savoured while the economy is shackled.

Here are some points generally in the direction of why MATI is wrong..and why MATI should not be overly worried about their very own ‘concerns’.

  • Taxes are nor borne out by resorts. Taxes are and they are meant to be passed on to customers. How resorts wants to deal with tax as a burden is another matter.
  • Resorts were required by law to payout 99% of service charge to staff but few if any resort has implemented this requirement.
  • The pitiful amounts of salaries most resorts pays to staff is not something to be gloated over. Much less is to be lamented over is the meagre 7% of staff salaries for the pension fund which compared to an average resort’s income scale is peanuts. And that is dried ones of course! A sample quick accurate approximation is like this: (100staff X 250$) X7%=1750$. Which is what?nothing right?
  • Resort owners has been threatening with the demise of tourism in the country from day one. With these new tax issues the clamour for impending doom of tourism will grow louder. But what is certain is that no resort owner will ever let go of any of their islands because of these new latest requirement to spend, which just tell us that all this noise is just noise and not much else.
  • The resorts having to re-negotiate on existing contracts between tour-operators maybe a problem in the short term. However most such contracts are short term based, specifying the rates the resort sells their rooms to the operator for one year or for one season. This maybe one issue the forth coming by-laws of the GST bill will iron out come November.
  • Another place where ironing out will be needed is about the resort’s lease and rent law which seems to suggest that rates will only be applied in relation to land area, without taking to consideration the proximity of resort to airport or Male’. Also where there is great demand and limited supply, as in the case of our resort islands, the government shall not make it unduly easy for resort-barons to lengthen the lease life of the islands for no reason than their greed.
  • Asking for extensions and exemptions for one year citing book keeping difficulties is excessive as the modest GST is not that complicated at all.
  • The rate of GST or such finer details of technical issues shall ideally be not passed at parliament as law. It would have been better for the taxation authority to deal with the finer print and have the Majlis play a supervisory role in the matter.

GST tax in various countries are different and arrived at differently. Its complicated in most cases for reasons related to many factors of the country’s economy, politics as well the law.

Its 7% in Singapore as of 1 July 2007
its 10% in Australia on most goods and services
its > 5% in Canada
its 5% in Hong Kong
It will be 4% in Malaysia come 3rd quarter of 2011
its 15% in New Zealand on October 1, 2010.

Magudhuhaa update

The beautiful island of Magudhuhaa is soon going to open in the even more beautiful atoll of Gdh. A closeup aerial pic of the island is not yet available in Google Earth as when the pic was snapped over the atoll, the satellite was essentially sleeping… Anyways, Here are some pics from the project report the resort submitted to MTDC which can be found at the MTDC site…

The local newspaper Haveeru, also reports that the resort is putting out to tender the design of logo and resort name, which will award 4000$ for the winner.

Although the resort will look just like any other beautiful resort, the staff areas look dull and unimaginative… Resort designers and architects should consider these as once erected, the structures will just stand there irritating those who occupy it for years to come. It wouldn’t cost awful lot of money to build sensible accommodation blocks for staff. Its sad that most employers still design staff accommodation blocks just as an afterthought after going through world-class designs for the guest areas.

Offering state dignitary title to tourism pioneers… again!

Slapping each other’s back on perceived achievements is a very familiar sight among the rich and politicians. President Anni conferring ‘State Dignitary’ title to Muhammad Umar Manik and Champa Hussein Afeef, yesterday is another such feat which needs to be commented about.
Despite their unremarkable running of several resorts (where workers toil in slave-like conditions), these two individuals have been receiving state dignitary title almost every year since ‘recognitions’ began. The citation of their award each year lists the same old tale of how they were there with the first batch of tourists to the country. But after hearing this consistent tale for the past few decades, one wonders weather is it not enough? Will we have to bear to hear the praise of Champa and Mu Manik for the rest of our lives? Would not somebody recognize the ‘others’ (a significant number of others) who worked hard to bring smiles to the guest and made the holiday possible? The waiters, roomboys the laundry boys, the engineering boys and so many other boys and girls who started their career at about the same age as Champa and Mu Manik who worked on their properties? Of course they are no longer boys and girls any more, time has taken its toll and they have grown to respectable old age with no recognition of their services. For sacrificing half of their adult life, banished away in 5 star resort islands, away from their families and friends what have they got in terms of recognition? Very little apart from the satisfaction that they have been useful for themselves and their loved ones back at home irrespective of how tough for them life was..
Recognition and awards are momentary 5 minutes of fame kind of things most people can do away with, but what about a proper recognition of their services such as a pension they can rely on once they are retired and back in their islands?
In most other countries business regulations and norms requires private employers to make arrangements for such cases where the staff can retire to a dignified retired life, however no such requirements were required of our ‘state dignitaries’ and those who served all their life in their resorts are just faceless nameless people once discharged from the resort after their useful resort life.
So we call on the government to rescind these farce recognitions and be judicious in selecting those who are worthy of recognition. The already rich and famous needs not be recognized because they are already recognized. People know Champ and Mu Manik and successive presidents needs not to introduce them again and again. Champa and Mu Manik were not doing favours for anyone except themselves. This country would have produced more entrepreneurs besides Champ and Mu Manik if the government plays even handed with all its citizens. The already rich in this country are rich because the government helped them in one way or another way. Bright ideas, innovative approaches and dedicated work have yet to be recognized in the country.

relevant links: velidhoo online

The new medical policy

Most resorts in Maldives do not have an in-house doctor to provide medical care to the staff. Hence being able to come to Male’ to seek medical services is relatively hassle-free in most resorts (the ones which are close to Male’). However there are those resorts which are relatively close to Male’ (the capital city) which has in-house doctors in residence and has inconceivably insensitive procedures for the staff to seek medical attention. Consider this new medical policy of a resort.

The steps involved in being able to show to doc.

  1. notify your supervisor
  2. supervisor to fill a form
  3. the patient to retrieve the form from supervisor’s office and go to doc
  4. the doc checks the patient
  5. the doc may or may not refer the patient to a hospital in Male

Of course this new policy is only applicable for the lower ranking staff and the doctor has always to be available for higher ranking staff. The policy is said to have come as a result of perceived abuse of the system by the workers which is understandable. However to overcome abuse in a system, a resort does not have to be insensitive to everyone. Those who are known to abuse the system could be straitened instead of being punitive to all. Lets go through all the steps in the procedure.

  • To notify to the supervisor: This is requires convincing the supervisor with ailment and symptoms that affect the worker. Having to divulge what ails the worker to others before doc is bad enough and is rightly adding insult to injury. Given a choice most human beings would not like to divulge their medical problems to others than their medical practitioners. However when a resort requires the workers to do just exactly this, it shows how insensitive a resort can be to staff.
  • Supervisor to fill a form: This is another layer of work to already work-overloaded supervisors which means delays and further red-tape between the sick staff and his/her treatment. Frequently, the supervisors have innumerable meetings and trainings so the sick staff having to depend on his/her busy supervisor to fill documentation for him/ her is needlessly cruel.
  • The patient to retrieve the form from supervisor’s office and go to doc: When a person is sick, and he/she has to undergo the indignity of having to divulge his ailment to ‘a superior’, after which he/she has to wait for the documentation to be prepared, after all this he/she has to go and find the supervisor wherever he or she maybe to retrieve those same documents and then again go to meet the doc who resides in another island… The steps are far too long and far too demanding of the sick. Just indicative of how evil a policy can be when it comes to lower ranking staff.
  • The doc: The doc is also a staff in the pay of the employer and its not uncommon for the the doc to be pressured not to issue ‘bed rests’ or any kind of rests to the staff to lengthen the time staff are required to work. Further the doc frequently is instructed not to refer the patients to further treatment at Male’ to save the employer money and to keep the worker at job despite his health.

Summary of new taxation rules for resorts

A summary of Second Amendment Bill to the Tourism Act and Tourism Goods and Services Tax Bill is as follows:

if the land area is < than 200,000m2 AND
if the rent is > than US$1 million, then the rent = US$1m/y

if the land area is < than 200,000m2 AND
if the rent is < than US$1 million then, the rent is= US$8/sqm

if the land area = 200,001 to 400,000m2 then, US$1.5m/y

if the land area> 400,001m2 AND
if the rent >US$2 million then, rent = US$2m/y

  • When this bill is enacted prior rates will be scrapped and all resorts will have to calculate rent based on this law.
  • Will start on the same day as taxation bill comes to effect
  • if the resort is registered in Maldives and is 55% shares are owned by the public, then that resort’s lease shall be extended to 99 years.

Its important to note that the new rules does not address the issue of “stolen” resorts, which are tourist islands the tourism ministry does not know about such as the Kandholhu Island Resort owned and run by the Universal Group.

Kandholhu Island Resort?

Relevant links:
Haama daily
at Minivan News

What happens when Eid festival (a public holiday) coincides with Friday?

Nothing as far as the labour law is concerned. Our labour law is ignorant of situations like these and the employees of resorts and hotels has to depend on the generosity of the resort managements to be offered another day in lieu of these two public holidays coinciding or one-and-half-times pay for working on such a day or situations like these. The relevant clause in the labour law is brief. It reads:

“Working on a public holiday
38. An employee required to work normal hours on a public holiday shall be
paid at least an amount equivalent to half of the minimum wages earned on a
normal day of work in addition to over time.

The clause ends there and there is no further ado it. However the need to add further qualifications and clarifications to the clause is evident from problems like this.

In different parts of the world there are provisions for situations like these where two public holidays coincide and here are some excerpts.



….If a public holiday falls on a day that would ordinarily be a working day for the employee (and the employee is not on vacation), the employee gets the day off and receives holiday pay for that day.
If a public holiday falls on a day that would not ordinarily be a working day for the employee (and the employee is not on vacation), the employee gets a substitute day off and receives holiday pay for that day. The substitute day off must be a day that ordinarily would be a working day for the employee. The substitute day off can be in advance of the public holiday. The employer can also designate another day within three months after the public holiday. As well, the employer and employee can agree in writing on a substitute day that is within 12 months after the public holiday. There a ministry policies that deal with irregularly scheduled employees.__________________________________________________


…You do not have an automatic right to take bank or public holidays off work, with or without pay. This will depends on your employment contract.


…If a standard public holiday falls on a weekend, a substitute public holiday will sometimes be observed on the first non-weekend day (usually Monday) after the weekend, whether by virtue of the public holiday legislation or by ad hoc proclamation. If a worker is required to work on a public holiday or substituted public holiday, they will usually be entitled to be paid at a holiday penalty rate.____________________________________________________________
…When the usual date of a bank or public holiday falls on a Saturday or Sunday, a substitute day is given, normally the following Monday. For example in 2009, Boxing Day is actually on Saturday, 26 December, so there is a substitute bank holiday on Monday, 28 December.____________________________________________________________

Coming back to the issue of public holidays, different countries have different number of public holidays and for different reasons. Here in Maldives we have comparably fewer public holidays than in other neighboring countries. Below is a list of a few neighboring countries and their public holidays:

Sri lanka (27 public holidays)

Tamil Thai Pongal Day
Duruthu Full Moon Poya Day
National Day
Navam Full Moon Poya Day
Maha Sivarathri Day
Milad-Un-Nabi (Holy Prophet’s Birthday)
Medin Full Moon Poya Day
Good Friday
Day prior to Sinhala and Tamil New Year Day
Sinhala and Tamil New Year Day
Additional Bank Holiday
Bak Full Moon Poya Day
May Day
Wesak Full Moon Poya Day
Day following Wesak Full Moon Poya Day
Poson Full Moon Poya Day
Esala Full Moon Poya Day
Nikini Full Moon Poya Day
Binara Full Moon Poya Day
Id-Ul-Fitr (Ramazan Festival Day)
Vap Full Moon Poya Day
Deepavali Festival Day
Il Full Moon Poya Day
Id-Ul-Allah (Hadji Festival Day)
Unduvap Full Moon Poya Day
Christmas Eve
Christmas Day

Thailand(20 public holidays)

1 January – New Year’s Day
Chinese New Year (new moon day of third lunar month)
Magha Puja Day (full moon day of third lunar month)
6 April – Chakri Memorial Day
13–15 April – Songkran Festival
1 May – National Labour Day
5 May – Coronation Day
9May – Royal Ploughing Ceremony
Visakha Puja Day (full moon day of sixth lunar month)
Asalha Puja Day (full moon day of eighth lunar month)
Buddhist Lent Day “Wan Kao Pansa” (day after full moon day of eighth lunar month)
12 August – H.M. The Queen‘s Birthday
End of Buddhist Lent Day “Wan Awk Pansa” (full moon day of eleventh lunar month)
23 October – Chulalongkorn Day
Loy Krathong (full moon day of twelfth lunar month)
5 December – H.M. The King‘s Birthday
10 December – Constitution Day
31 December – New Year’s Eve

Bangladesh (17 public holidays)

21 February 2010 – International Mother Language Day
27 February 2010* – Eid-e-Miladunnabi
17 March 2010 – Birth day of the Father of the Nation, Bangabandhu
26 March 2010 – Independence Day
1 May 2010 – International Labour Day
27 May 2010 – Buddha Purnima
28 July 2010* – Shab-e-Barat
13 August 2009* – Posthumous
15 August 2010 – National Mourning Day
1 September 2010* – Janmastami Bangladesh Revises Janmastami Public Hpliday Date Again
7 September 2010* – [Laylat al-Qadr|Shab-e-Qadar]
10 September 2010* – Jamat-ul-Bida
11 September 2010* – Eid ul-Fitr
17 October 2010 – Durga Puja
17 November 2010* – Eid ul-Adha
16 December 2010 – Victory Day
25 December 2010 – Christmas Day

Nepal (17 public holidays)

1 January – New Year’s Day
14 and 15 January – Makar Sankranti
20 January – Saraswati Puja
12 February – Maha Shivaratri
24 February – Education Day
28 February and 1 March – Phagu Purnima
14 April – Nepali New Year
24 August – Raksha Bandhan
25 August – Gaijatra
1 September – Krishna Janmashtami
10 September – Dar Khane Din
11 Septenber – [ Teej in Nepal, fasting by women ]
4 to 7 November – Diwali

South Africa (12 public holidays)

1 January – New Year’s Day
21 March – Human Rights Day Sharpeville massacre
The Friday – before Easter Sunday Good Friday
The Monday – following Easter Sunday Family Day
27 April – Freedom Day
1 May – Workers’ Day
16 June – [Youth Day] Soweto uprising
9 August – National Women’s Day
24 September – Heritage Day
16 December – Day of Reconciliation
25 December – Christmas Day
26 December – Day of Goodwill

Maldives (11 public holidays)

National day
Prophet’s birthday
1st sitting of the peoples Majlis
The day Maldives embraced Islam
Independence day
Beginning of Ramadan
Eid al fitr
Victory day
Republic day
Hajj day
Eid al alha

India (11 public holidays)

1 January – New Year
14 Makarara Sankrati – (calculated)
26 January – Republic Day
1 May – Labour day
15 August – Independence Day: Marks the day India achieved independence from the British Empire
10 September Eid ul-Fitr (calculated)
2 October – Gandhi Jayanti: Birth Day of Mahatma Gandhi
5 November – Diwali: Ram returned to his kingdom after defeating Ravan Diwali
14 November – Childrens day: Nehru birthday
16 November to November 19 Eid al-Adha (calculated)
25 December – Christmas

So the number of public holidays cannot be as burdensome on businesses as in other countries than in Maldives. In fact Maldives has far fewer public holidays than other neighbouring countries, so employers shall not feel pressed to be mean and frugal when it comes to allowing the employees days off with their families in well deserved public holidays.