PSM: Probe on gathering unnecessary and waste of public resources

S-ArutchelvanKAJANG: Parti Sosialis Malaysia (PSM) central committee member S Arutchelvan today criticised police for investigating a peaceful solidarity gathering held for former Master’s student Siti Noor Aishah Atam outside the Women’s Prison here two months ago.

“Police calling me today to investigate (the gathering) is unnecessary and a waste of public resources.

“This is a public gathering and I believe police had gathered evidence in the form of pictures and videos,” he told reporters at the police district headquarters.

Arutchelvan and his lawyer, Shashi Devan, spent about 15 minutes in the police station having his statement recorded by investigating officer Insp Raziman Rasid after he received a letter dated June 9 asking him to be present at the police station today.

It was reported that about 30 people had gathered in front of Kajang Prison on April’s Fool Day to show solidarity with the former Universiti Malaya student, who was arrested under security laws.

Besides Arutchelvan, Bersih 2.0 chairperson Maria Chin Abdullah and Suaram activist Amir Abd Hadi were also said to be present.

On April 26, Siti Aishah was jailed five years by the High Court for possessing 12 books related to terrorism.

Previously, the same court acquitted her on the charge of possessing the books on terrorism in September 2016 but the appeals court overturned her acquittal and ordered her to enter her defence on the charge.

Arutchelvan also told reporters that he had told Insp Raziman he would only answer questions about the gathering when he is charged in court.

He also told police his views that every Malaysian had the right to assemble peacefully under the law.

Arutchelvan was in the past hauled up for investigations for various offences.

Last year, he was picked up for investigations for organising a Labour Day rally and arrested a day before the Bersih 5 rally.

He also faces a sedition charge for allegedly criticising the judiciary over the Sodomy 2 decision against opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim in 2015.