Little India with its thriving business community needs more than a police beat base, says PKR.
Alleging that crime was on the rise in the area, Lembah Pantai MP Nurul Izzah Anwar said that locals here needed a strong police presence.
Given the area’s prominence and heavy commercial activity, she did not think that a smaller police beat base – one suggested by the Federal Territories and Urban Wellbeing Ministry- was enough.
“They (Brickfields locals) need to enjoy a district police headquarters, and now the government [wants to] give them a mere police beat?” she told reporters in front of the former police station, along Jalan Tun Sambanthan.
Bukit Bintang MP (DAP) Fong Kui Lun and Segambut MP (DAP) Lim Lip Eng were also present.
She was referring to Federal Territories and Urban Wellbeing Minister Raja Nong Chik Raja Zainal Abidin who in a The Star report said that a 1,000-sq ft police beat base would be built in nearby Little India.
Serving the community for more than 30 years, the police headquarters was vacated in 2010 and its operations shifted to Sri Petaling, more than 12km away.
Following a land swap deal, the area which formerly housed a police station and quarters, is now abandoned and is slated for residential development.
A KL City Hall (DBKL) notice set up in front of the former quarters showed that two condominium blocks – each with 33 and 41 floors respectively – are slated to be built there.
Its intended density would also be changed from 400 to 450 people an acre.
However, this land was in the process of being handed over to Primamuda Holdings Sdn Bhd, a private developer.
Nurul then alleged that one of the company’s directors was none other than Bukit Bintang Wanita Umno chief Mariany Mohamad Yit.
This detail led Nurul to ask if the land swap and subsequent costs were done in an open manner.
Looking to the past, she said that the federal government had attempted a land swap in Federal Hill in Sept 2005; a move that was opposed by residents, and later overturned.
“If the swap was not suitable for Federal Hill residents, why would it be suitable in a highly congested and densely populated Brickfields?” she said.
The MPs present then asked that the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) probe the land deal.
Part of Brickfields is currently being refurbished into a modern Little India. The area is home to a predominant Indian community and is adjacent to the KL Sentral business district.