Malaysian Indian Congress leader and Public Works Department Minister Dato Samy Vellu is in Chennai to meet Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M Karunanidhi to clarify his government’s stand on the Malaysian Tamils issue.
In an exclusive interview to NDTV the minister admits that his government has no concrete evidence to suggest that Hindraf (Hindu Rights Action Force), a coalition of 30 Hindu organisations in Malaysia, has links with the LTTE and explains his Cabinet colleague’s recent outburst against the Tamil Nadu chief minister.
Excerpts from the interview:
NDTV: Do you have any evidence to back your government’s charge that the Hindraf has links with terrorists?
D S Vellu: Hindraf said they would fight like the Tigers, the way the Tigers are fighting in Sri Lanka. It was by Vedamurthy. After he talked like that, we did an investigation and it was felt that he may have gone there for training.
NDTV: Do you have evidence of this?
D S Vellu: No. It is our suspicion.
NDTV: The Tamils were protesting with pictures of Mahatma Gandhi. It was a peaceful demonstration.
D S Vellu: I don’t think it was peaceful. They started at 4 am and broke the temple door and shops and stoned policemen and broke the heads of 4 policemen. Is that called peace?
NDTV: Do you think the statement of your colleague in the Cabinet asking the Tamil Nadu CM to lay off, could have been avoided?
D S Vellu: When two or three opposition parties got up in Parliament and said the Tamil Nadu government wants the Indian government to interfere in Malaysia’s internal affairs, my colleague had answered them, and interference is different from using diplomatic channels.
NDTV: But the Tamil Nadu CM didn’t ask the Indian government to interfere.
D S Vellu: My colleague didn’t mean any disrespect.