Indian biz group threatens action against detractors

A-T-Kumararajah

PETALING JAYA: A leading Malaysian-Indian business group has threatened legal action against its detractors.

The Malaysian Associated Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (MAICCI) has said it will take legal action against those who smear its image.

Its secretary-general A T Kumararajah said MAICCI had been a responsible go-between for Indian businessmen and the government.

“But there is a group which goes around defaming the MAICCI leadership and claiming we have cheated businessmen. These people have to stop dreaming,” he said in a statement.

Kumararajah said the executive council, which met yesterday, has decided to lodge a police report against its detractors.

Last week, leaders of two state Indian guilds which are linked to MAICCI wanted Kenneth Eswaran to resign as president, saying he does not qualify under the association’s constitution.

Selangor Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry president P Muguntha said MAICCI’s constitution allowed only a person of Indian origin to lead the body.

“Kenneth is of Sri Lankan origin and was even born there. He only came to Malaysia later and then obtained his Malaysian citizenship,” he said.

According to Muguntha, the constitution states the term “Indian” applied to person/s, company or firm of Indian origin or with 51% Indian shareholdings living in or operating a business in Malaysia.

Muguntha, who was removed from MAICCI last June for raising the issue of Kenneth’s eligibility, said he had lodged a police report, as well as complaints with the Registrar of Societies.

Weighing in on the issue, Sabah Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry president V Suppiah said Kenneth had failed to observe the rules of MAICCI.

“He has no respect for the rule of law and removed those who questioned him,” he said.

In response to the two, Eswaran said he was eligible to hold the position in MAICCI as he was the president of the Johor chapter of the Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry.