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Saravanan appears to be muddling issues

June 22, 2012

FMT LETTER: From Kunabal Rajagopal, via e-mail

I refer to the report, ‘Look, speak and act like Indian, but…’ The remarks by the Deputy Minister of the Federal Territoties and Urban Wellbeing  needs to be addressed. Saravanan, who is also MIC vice-president, took a swipe at Indian leaders of NGOs and political parties.

Yes, he is right because these people don’t go around carrying parangs, intimidating, harassing right minded people seeking justice. He further goes on to say that the BN government had been trying its best to assist the 1.8 million Indian population since the 2008, and yet there are still people criticising the MIC.

It’s fair to say Indians were a neglected lot prior to 2008. So, what’s wrong people criticising. Then he goes on to defend his boss G Palanivel for being not vocal openly. He says that MIC previously had only one ministership with Samy Vellu holding the position and that currently they have two ministers both highlighting Indian problems at the right forum.

He further advances into saying that “Even component parties like MCA, Gerakan and PPP are lending a helping hand in tackling Indian woes and in addition, BN-friendly parties like the IPF, MIUP and Makkal Sakti parties are with them”. He pointed out that “there is no such thing as an Indian problem or a Chinese… It is all a Malaysian problem”.

Adding one more captain to the ship is not good enough, if sincerity is not the order. The whole nation is highlighting the plight of Indian, therefore highlighting alone doesn’t sound right coming from Ministers. Good, you can see that it is not a race based problem. Therefore, you must advocate closing down race based parties and form one party system for all Malaysians in the BN.

After saying all these, he goes on to say that ” the government, especially Najib, needs to be careful in tackling Indian issues and that they are saddled by a perception issue”, and as an example he cited “for the first time in the 2011 Budget, the government allocated RM100 million to upgrade Tamil schools but yet people are criticising”.

It appears that MIC’s primary concern is only Tamil schools and temples as otherwise Indians in this country are doomed. There are many more important issues for the survival of the Indian community the MIC ought to address. Please stop harping on Tamil schools and temples, and I believe today’s Indians want more important issues to be handled as priority i.e. brith certificates, citizenship, identity cards, scholarship, job opportunities etc. etc.

On the business front, he says the government should set an outright percentage for Indian participation in government projects. The interesting point made “in the last 50 years not even one non-Bumiputera contractor had benefited from DBKL”.

He further expresses that Indians need more policy amendments in the business field, the government must undertake serious efforts to ensure Indians are not left behind, schools and temples have been a major problem for Indians since independence” and sums up to say “local councils must also give approval for any temple construction plans submitted by existing temples.

Hindus believe that temples must be reconstructed or upgraded every 12 years…If they do not, then they are deemed to have committed a sin… local councils are ignorant because there is no Hindus employed to tell them this”.

Saravanan is the Deputy Minister of the Ministry Of Federal Territories And Wellbeing. DBKL is a government agency under his ministry. Lately, on a Hindu temple issue he took a swipe on DBKL calling them “little Napoleons running the show… running about creating havoc and damage to the Barisan Nasional-led government”.

You were shamed by the DBKL authorities and you were forced to get the Minister himself to handle the situation, what more do you expect ordinary citizens to resolve problems with the government.

On the Bersih 3.0 issue, he puts a point to say that the rally crowd “was 80,000 or 300,000 as claimed by the opposition, it was barely one percent of the country’s total population of 29 million”.

Then he goes on to say that “We (the government) should have allowed them (protesters) to meet for two hours at Dataran Merdeka. It’s no big deal…just let them gather, say what they want and disperse”. And sums up to say that “We shot ourselves in the foot in the absence of strategic planning”.

Now, I’m confused, on the one hand he says the government has helped the Indian community then he criticises the authorities for their action and further saddled by perception issues, cautions Najib to be careful in tackling Indian issues.

His remarks are unclear and blurred. He appears to be muddling the issues. Saravanan, please take a break and come back with something good the people can absorb.

Also read: Look, speak and act like Indian, but…


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