KUALA LUMPUR: The now-famous Indian surname of “Kutty” made its way into the Dewan Rakyat today, after two Barisan Nasional MPs of Indian Muslim background stood up to respond to an opposition question on Malaysia’s recent involvement in a food aid shipment to Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar.
It started after Abdul Azeez Rahim (BN-Baling) praised Umno and PAS for taking part in the aid flotilla to deliver some 2,000 tonnes of food to the Rohingya near the Bangladesh-Myanmar border, and challenged Pakatan Harapan to do the same.
“Follow what PAS has done. Kutty or no Kutty, we all must give support and aid,” he said.
“100 BN members and 100 PAS members went.”
The name “Kutty” became a hot topic recently after Deputy Prime Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi claimed that it was part of former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s full name on his identity card.
Zahid said the details were furnished to him by the National Registration Department’s director-general.
His remarks sparked allegations of racism as well as calls to investigate the NRD’s violation of the Personal Data Protection Act.
Responding to Azeez, Deputy Foreign Minister Reezal Merican stood up and said: “It was a long question. That is what happens when a mamak asks a question. The one who wants to answer too is also a mamak,” he said, referring to the popular word to address the local Indian Muslim community.
“The one who wants to answer has a bit of higher caste,” he said, evoking laughter from the floor.
Earlier, Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail (PKR-Permatang Pauh ) asked the government to state the results of the flotilla shipment, and whether Putrajaya would cut diplomatic ties with Myanmar.