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Does anyone care when our national flag is desecrated?

October 19, 2017

How is it that flags hung at various locations in Kuala Lumpur are in a tattered, torn and sorry state?

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A flag at a guardhouse, tangled and wrapped around its flagpole.

A flag at a guardhouse, tangled and wrapped around its flagpole.

By CY Ming

At the beginning of August every year, the country’s leaders call on the rakyat to fly the Jalur Gemilang as a show of their patriotism.

While some eagerly hoist the national flag and look on with pride as it flutters majestically in the air, others do it more out of a sense of duty, with some business owners agreeing to only because of pressure from the authorities.

It is common to find government ministries and agencies decorating tall buildings with a large number of flags, with some placed on fences and perimeter walls.

Mini national flags are also strung together like buntings, turning them into nothing more than ornamental pieces.

Those hung by a roadside stall next to the traffic lights at Jalan Perkasa and Jalan Pria in Kuala Lumpur must have been left there for some time now, as the colours have faded.

The flagpole of a full-sized Jalur Gemilang was unceremoniously tied to a tree trunk with the flag dropping down horizontally instead of vertically.

National flags used to decorate a roadside stall at the Jalan Perkasa-Jalan Pria intersection but now the colours of the flags have long faded.

National flags used to decorate a roadside stall at the Jalan Perkasa-Jalan Pria intersection but now the colours of the flags have long faded.

Nearby, the Jalur Gemilang flown on a flagpole inside a used car yard was a sorry sight, as it was tattered and torn.

Both the roadside stall and the used car operator are occupying the road shoulder, which is government land.

Surely they should be more appreciative and show it by treating our national flag with greater respect, unless they are unhappy about paying enforcement officers for the occupation of the land.

Jalan Perkasa is mostly a three-lane road on either side but turns into two lanes just before the Jalan Pria junction.

A tattered Jalur Gemilang inside a used car lot at Jalan Perkasa just before the Jalan Pria junction in Kuala Lumpur.

A tattered Jalur Gemilang inside a used car lot at Jalan Perkasa just before the Jalan Pria junction in Kuala Lumpur.

Relocating the roadside stall and used car lot would allow another lane to be added to meet the three lanes in front just after the traffic lights.

Removing the wide road shoulder would also create space for a slip road to be built into Jalan Pria, bypassing the traffic lights.

If not, traffic along Jalan Perkasa can be backed up a few hundred metres because of the bottleneck at the Jalan Pria traffic lights.

A large number of vehicles pass through Jalan Perkasa daily, with the evening traffic from the city heading towards the heavily populated residential areas of Pandan and Ampang.

But hardly anyone notices the sorry state of our national flags along this stretch or any other place, and sadly, no one seems to care.

CY Ming is an FMT reader.

The views expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of FMT.

 


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