GEORGE TOWN: The late T Nhaveen was given a grand send-off by his friends today as visibly traumatised family members were left still grappling with the horror of the brutal assault last Friday that the young man was unable to survive.
In the incident, five youths armed with helmets, relentlessly hit and tortured the 18-year-old as well as sodomised him, in an attack so horrific it left the teen brain dead.
Nhaveen died yesterday evening from his injuries and his body was brought from the Penang Hospital to United Hokkien Cemeteries at Jalan Batu Gantong here at about 2am earlier this morning.
At 4.32pm, his casket, carrying a poster of a tweet of Nhaveen’s idol AR Rahman attached at one end, was rolled into cremator no 4.
Earlier, a two-hour Hindu funeral ritual was conducted as a near-lifeless D Shanti, 43, crouched on the floor, weeping uncontrollably over her son’s casket.
Despite Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng, state executive councillors, federal minister Rohani Abdul Karim and MIC leaders having come to pay their last respects, Shanti remained inconsolable about the death of her son.
“Why take my son away? Will he be the last to die like this?” a distraught Shanti wailed as Guan Eng and others came to console her and offer words of comfort.
Nhaveen’s friends, who came by the hordes, printed large banners and hung these by the hearse carrying his body.
One of the banners read “Rest in peace machy (sic). There are some who rule this land and think themselves to be kings. You ruled the hearts of people around you and will do so in the paradise too…”
They also brought flowers formed in the shape of the alphabet “N” as well as a blue and white star. There was also a board decorated with white flowers and the alphabets “Rp” in blue.
When asked what the alphabets meant, the boy’s friends said “N” was for Nhaveen, but did not want to elaborate on what “Rp” meant, saying only that it was something their “group” would understand.
A family member made a polystyrene clef symbol decorated with flowers to signify Nhaveen’s love for music.
Mixed martial arts star Agilan Thani also sent a bouquet of flowers.
At 4pm, Nhaveen’s casket, carried by his friends who sported similar haircuts, left the area where the wake was held.
The sound of Chinese drums played by drummers of a dragon dance troupe, was unfortunately not nearly loud enough to drown the piercing cries of Shanti and other family members who became hysterical and screamed with grief at the prospect of never seeing Nhaveen again. Women are traditionally told to refrain from partaking in Hindu burials or cremations.
As Nhaveen’s casket was carried out, friends carried a black placard which read “#justicefornhaveen” and chanted the same.
Despite a hearse on standby to transport the casket to the crematorium, Nhaveen’s friends chose to carry the casket all the way.
At the crematorium, shouts of “Nhaveen macha hidup” were heard as sobbing teenagers held on to the casket as it was rolled into the cremator.
A friend yelled: “Let me come with you! Don’t let me go.”