PETALING JAYA: Ramesh Rao of NGO Pertubuhan Minda Sosial dan Prihatin (PMSP) has said all he wanted was for Dr Mahathir Mohamad to experience what “Reformasi” participants, including himself, endured in 1998 when they were arrested and beaten up.
“How is that acting like a thug? How was I rude?”
Ramesh was speaking to reporters after lodging a police report against Mahathir over the signing of the Citizens’ Declaration on Friday that seeks to oust Prime Minister Najib Razak from office.
Ramesh also responded to a police report lodged against him by former Batu Kawan Umno division vice-chief Khairuddin Abu Hassan for “threatening with intent to injure” the former premier.
Referring to Khairuddin, Ramesh said he did not understand how the latter could accuse him of acting like a thug and being insolent.
“He is the otak udang,” he said alluding to the Malay term for idiot, an insult Khairuddin had flung on those who chastised the Citizens’ Declaration initiative.
Ramesh also ticked off Khairuddin for calling him ugly in a Facebook post, stating that if the latter was “so handsome”, he should have become a model instead.
In his police report yesterday, Khairuddin cited an article published by news portal Malaysian Review, headlined “PMSP: Arrest Dr Mahathir, beat him until he loses (his) teeth” in which Ramesh allegedly encouraged the police to exert physical violence on Mahathir.
The portal’s article was accompanied by a 1:22 minute video recorded by KiniTV in which Ramesh said: “Arrest Mahathir for 14 days, let him be beaten the way I was beaten (during Reformasi)…until his teeth are knocked out.”
Reformasi refers to a period when supporters of Anwar Ibrahim took to the streets after he was dropped as the Deputy Prime Minister by Mahathir and charged with corruption and sodomy.