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Waytha: Continous oppression, a ticking time bomb

 | July 25, 2016

Hindraf Chief says the truth and facts of the oppression, suppression and marginalization of the Tamils were quite successfully portrayed in Kabali, the blockbuster movie.


KUALA LUMPUR: Hindraf Makkal Sakthi has warned the Malaysian Government, in elaborating on a statement, that its “continuous oppression of the Indian community” was a time bomb waiting to explode at any time.

“There would be a ‘rebellion of the underclass’ greater than the 2007 uprising in the streets of Kuala Lumpur,” assured Hindraf Chairman P. Waythamoorthy . “This is a national security problem in the making.”

Indians and others still remember the role played by Hindraf in 2007 when 100,000 people took to the streets, he reminded. “The uprising saw the political tsunami in 2008.”

Waytha pledged that Hindraf would continue creating awareness on the oppression and marginalization policies carried out by the Malaysian Government. “The underclass in particular are nostalgic about the Hindraf-led revolution created in the minds of the people in 2007.”

The Hindraf Chief, a senior lawyer in private practice and human rights advocate, was taking his cue from Kabali, the Tamil blockbuster.

He conceded that Kabali was fiction. Nevertheless, it was based on some of the hard truths and core problems faced by Malaysians of Indian origin. “It has found positive reception among millions of viewers around the globe,” said Waytha.

“The movie has in fact addressed some of the crucial issues in Malaysia.”

Obviously, said the Hindraf Chief, the producers of the movie played safe at the same time so the movie would not be banned in Malaysia. “The producers just stopped short of generating controversy.”

Nevertheless, added Waytha who was in the Cabinet and Senate briefly after the General Election in 2013, Kabali was probably the first attempt by the Tamil film industry to depict the true plight of the downtrodden and suppressed in Malaysia.

“The truth and facts of the oppression, suppression and marginalisation of Tamils in Malaysia were quite successfully portrayed.”

It has in fact created international awareness, he continued.

The movie, he stressed, highlighted four key areas affecting downtrodden Indians.

Firstly, temple demolition was rampant in Malaysia. “The movie, for obvious reasons, portrayed it as having occurred during the colonial period,” said Waytha. ‘No temples were demolished during the British raj.”

Viewers in Malaysia are aware that these scenes were over-edited. “It hits at the core of the problems created by the government as part of their agenda to deny the historical existence of Indians in Malaysia for centuries,” said Waytha.

Secondly, the oppression of Indian transmigrants in Malaya during the British Empire. “The colonialists discriminated in terms of wages,” said Waytha. “They paid even lower wages to Indians compared to what they paid Chinese coolies and Javanese labourers.”

“These practices have in fact continued to this day.”

Thirdly, crime activities by underclass Indians in Malaysia are in fact controlled by Chinese triads. “Indian gangsters are just pawns to do the ‘dirty’ jobs,” charged Waytha. “The real dons behind the scene are Chinese triads.”

Fourthly, Indian youths are frustrated with the government for not giving due recognition for their academic qualifications. “Even when they excel in education, they are discriminated against in job opportunities, for one,” said Waytha.

“They have in fact fallen into a state of hopelessness as a result of the discrimination and oppression.”

The Hindraf Chief went on to urge the people to stay focused on the gross violation of human rights in the country.

He cautioned the media against being distracted by the false picture painted by so-called programmes ostensibly carried out by the government through MIC, MIC-linked NGOs and SEDIC.

SEDIC is a unit in the Prime Minister’s Department.

In stressing that Indians had been short changed big-time by the government, Waytha held MIC for being party to illegalities. “The MIC has been a failure,” he alleged. “It has to take the blame for failing to push for fundamental rights after claiming to represent Indians.”

He cited, among others, the displacement and fragmentation of estates, lack of alternative housing, job opportunities and economic prospects.


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