“Eh raajjeyge rahthah fehikohlamaatho, dhonveli mithuditha hudhukohlamaatho'' is a song that this generation of people may not know. But in the 90s it was always on the radios. Back then it was impossible to do any work in the house without dancing to the tunes of it. This famous song was produced by Thoddoo Sosun Club, much more well known as Thoddoo “Bandiyaa” Group. The song was what the club produced for a competition in 1989 which was hosted by TV Maldives. The lyrics and the tunes of the music were played beautifully.
AA. Thoddoo Sosun Club
The famous song video with 2 groups one in violet, other in yellow with “Bandiyas” under their arms was choreographed beautifully and was remade and it caught the winds with people as it was reminiscent of the past. In 2019 the tourism ministry used it as the theme song. The remake of the song which was sung by Zara and Ahfaan received really well. With that the product of Thoddoo “Bandiya” group was in the air again.
Way before the song Thoddoo which is located on the east of Ari atoll was famous too. A name which was common to any maldivian. On each Ramadan, without the name of the island being said, the month of Ramadan wouldn’t have gone by. Which is due to the island having great lands for agriculture, and their watermelons being famous. Thoddoo with its land area of 172.6 hectares is huge. The English and numerical values given to the island is U-1.
Thoddoo had a population of 665 people in the year 1985.There are 319 women and 346 men. Looking at the census of 2017, the island had a population of 1979. There are 954 women and 1025 men. By February of 2022 the population of the island had increased to 2154. There are 1057 women and 1097 men.
PHOTO: Ahmed Karam@Karam5757
The backbone of Thoddoo’s economy is farming. While when Thoddoo is mentioned, watermelons come to mind, they farm for more than just watermelons. They farm all the necessary items for the Maldivian markets. Most of the citizens of the island are involved in farming on the island.
Even though the island's economic driving force is farming, tourism is starting to flourish more now. Thoddoo currently is the 2nd most successful guest house business going on currently. The island currently has 51 guest houses and more being built.
The island has 12 general stores, 15 cafes/restaurants and multiple souvenirs shops. The petrol shed, construction companies and travel agencies produce work opportunities for the citizens of the island and bring in money for the island.
Currently the biggest issue Thoddoo is facing is not having jetty’s for the 2 monsoon seasons as it is inhibiting their upcoming businesses, currently in June and July they will be facing harsh ocean waves and weather and can’t use the jetty in the meantime. In turn they also are facing the dangers of island erosion.
In this year's budget there are 22 special plans for Thoddoo. The sewage and water pipes project has been contracted out already. Which is estimated to finish on May 6th of 2023. The police station project is also contracted out as well. The jetty construction work is currently ongoing. After it has been built, the jetty will be able to function on a level necessary for Thoddoo in both monsoons.Which will be a huge boon for the businesses of Thoddoo.
Work against the erosion of Thoddoo has been planned out. The new STELCO building construction and football field works are currently ongoing as well.
Photo: PSM News
Thoddoo has historical places. The place where the Thoddoo people of the past called “Bodu gaafuni” which is Thodoo “Dhaagaba” was linked back in 1958 of Maldivian history. When Thoddoo of east Ari atoll is mentioned, it is taken just as the watermelon producing island might be due to the lack of information about the island. The island has masters of farming. One of the biggest hubs of tourism in Maldives. An island becoming a center of businesses.
The beautiful Thoddoo is in a serene space. The citizens of the island and the guests who come to spend their holidays mingle and are welcomed warm heartedly. With huge and expansive farm fields, historic places, how is Thoddoo looking to visit during the holidays? Download Speedboat tickets to the Island on Odiapp. Link here.