KUALA LUMPUR: Prime Minister Najib Razak has give his assurance that he will work towards resolving the issue of citizenship faced by members of the Indian community who were born before the country’s Independence.
Najib said the time had come for those who had yet to obtain citizenship to redeem their right.
“It need not be delayed anymore. I am aware that there are members of the Indian community who were born before Independence and have yet to obtain citizenship.
“We will solve this in appreciation of the sacrifice of the Indian community who have contributed to the development of the country,” he said when launching MIC’s 70th anniversary celebrations, here, last night.
Speaking before 7,000 members of the party, Najib said the government would also prepare hostels for the children of the rural Indian community who were faced with social issues, to ensure that they would also receive opportunities for quality education.
Najib, who is also the chairman of the Cabinet Committee on Indian Affairs, reiterated his commitment that all efforts to increase the socio-economic standing of members of the Indian community would continue.
“A lot of efforts have been implemented. Since 2009 a total of 26,000 entrepreneurs from the Indian community were assisted with allocations totalling RM844.39 million, while RM760 million was allocated for the SJKT (Nationa-Type Tamil schools) education infrastructure and I have also approved seven more SJKTs for construction,” he said.
In the meantime, Najib also reminded the people that the concept of togetherness between races in the country must be maintained to ensure continued political stability.
He said although the Indian community in the country only made up 7.3% of the population, it was a community of loyal friends to the Barisan Nasional.
MIC which was established on Aug 6, 1946, was a product of the Malayan Indian Conference attended by representatives of various social organisations, which then joined the alliance of Umno and MCA in 1955.
During the event, MIC also paid tribute to its past presidents.
Also present were MIC president Dr S Subramaniam, MCA president Liow Tiong Lai, former MIC president S Samy Vellu and families of the late former presidents of the party.
Earlier, Subramaniam in his speech, described MIC as now refreshed with a new leadership line-up after having faced an 18-month long internal crisis.
He also urged all party leaders and members to give their all towards advancing the Indian community.
“The “Single Voice, Common Goal’ theme chosen for the anniversary calls on all party members to work together to achieve a common goal, which is to take care and fight for the welfare of the Indian community in this country from every angle,” he added.