Early voters queued up outside polling stations across the archipelago as the country votes in the parliamentary elections on Saturday which could decide the fate of the government just over a 100 days after it was elected to office.
A total of 386 candidates from 10 parties and independents would be vying for a seat in parliament for the next five years.
Main ruling Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) led by former president Mohamed Nasheed has fielded candidates for 86 constituencies.
Jumhoory Party (JP) and its leader Gasim Ibrahim had accused MDP of violating the coalition agreement which swept the presidential elections last November. JP has fielded 41 candidates of its own and had announced collaboration with former president Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom's Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM).
In fear of losing a party leadership dispute, Yameen who suffered an embarrassing defeat in November had formed a new party named People's National Congress (PNC). But after the Supreme Court had ruled in his favour, Yameen is fielding a total 47 candidates from both parties in alliance with business tycoon Gasim's party.