Monday, March 31, 2008

Release Hindraf 5, says Samy ... yes, you read that right!

Sunday March 30, 2008

KUALA LUMPUR: MIC president Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu has urged the government to release the five Hindu Rights Action Force (Hindraf) leaders who are being detained under the Internal Security Act (ISA).

He said two of the leaders -- R. Kenghadaran, 40, who is very sick and M. Manoharan, 46, who had won the Kota Alam Shah state seat in Selangor on a DAP ticket on March 8 -- should be freed sooner.

He said another two, V. Ganabatirau, 34, and K. Vasantha Kumar, 34, had not been very much involved in the rally organised by Hindraf in Kuala Lumpur on Nov 25 last year.

The fifth leader being detained under the ISA is P. Uthayakumar.

Speaking to reporters after opening a workshop on "Rebranding the MIC" here Sunday, Samy Vellu said the wives of Kenghadaran and Manoharan had approached him for his assistance.

"I have decided to raise it with the government. I will raise it (the issue of their release) with Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi after he returns from Sabah.

"I will also meet Home Minister Datuk Seri Syed Hamid Albar and Inspector General of Police Tan Sri Musa Hassan. I have already made some moves on this earlier but I did not tell anyone. I will now make a firm move to see what can be done by the government with regard to their plight," Samy Vellu claimed.

He said Ganabatirau, and Vasantha Kumar were "not very much involved (in the rally), so the government has to make a decision."

Samy Vellu claimed that this was not a publicity stunt or a move to win back Indian support for the party.

"This is done in fairness, sympathy and, also, we feel that we as Indians have to do something about it. It is not a publicity stunt," he said.

Samy Vellu said that he was harshly criticised by certain people when he spoke to Abdullah and the Attorney General about reducing the attempted murder charges against the 31 people detained during the Hindraf rally, but he had continued to assist them.

Malaysian opposition calls for release of Hindraf 5

Release of Hindraf 5 - pressing agenda of 82 MPs and 196 State Assembly members from Malaysian opposition

One of the major breakthroughs of the March 8 political tsunami was the transformation of “Makkal Sakti” from a call for the end of the long-standing marginalization of the Malaysian Indians into a rallying and symbolic cry by all Malaysians to end all forms of marginalization against any Malaysian or group, regardless of race or religion.

It is distressing therefore that despite assurances by the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi that he has heard the voice of Malaysians on March 8 for change, actions taken by the second Abdullah administration have proved otherwise – in particular the statement by the Home Minister, Datuk Seri Syed Hamid Albar refusing to release newly-elected Selangor DAP State Assemblyman for Kota Alam Shah and four other Hindraf leaders, P. Uthayakumar, V. Ganabatirau, R. Kenghadharan and T. Vasantha Kumar from Internal Security Act (ISA) detention.

A pressing agenda for 82 MPs and 196 State Assembly members from DAP, PKR and PAS in Malaysia is to work out a common strategy for the immediate and unconditional release of the five Hindraf leaders from ISA detention and to ensure that the second Abdullah government understand the meaning of “Makkal Sakti”.

(Speech at the DAP Bukit Glugor general election thanksgiving dinner to celebrate re-election victory of Karpal Singh as MP for Bukit Glugor at Long Say Building, Burmah Road, Penang on Saturday, 29th March 2008)

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Sunday, March 16, 2008

At least 10 arrested for staging street protest in Singapore

I, Seelan Palay, was also arrested yesterday. I fell down as they were dragging me away so I ended being dragged on the road (like a sack) and pushed into the police van. Photographs are below the news article.

SINGAPORE, March 15 (Kyodo) - Singapore police arrested at least 10 political activists Saturday who staged a rare demonstration against the government's response to rising inflation.

Nearly 30 people took part in the protest by the Singapore Democratic Party in front of Parliament House, making it one of the largest demonstrations recently in Singapore, where street protests political are illegal without police approval.

Led by the party's Secretary General Chee Soon Juan, a former university lecturer who has become one of the government's most vociferous critics, the demonstrators were wearing red shirts emblazoned with the slogan "Cannot stand it anymore."

They carried placards and chanted, "No more price hikes, no more exploitation, no more repression, take care of our poor."

They accused the city-states high-salaried Cabinet ministers of being out of touch with the plight of lower income Singaporeans.

After Chee and other senior party members refused police orders to disperse and tried to continue their march, a scuffle with the police ensued.

At least 10 protesters were hauled up, some struggling and kicking, into three waiting police vans and taken away, amid curious stares from dozens of passers-by who had gathered near the site.

Chee earlier said his application in November last year to stage the protest had been rejected by the police but he decided to go ahead with it anyway. "The important thing is to give Singaporeans a voice so that they can stand up for themselves," he said.

The inflation rate has been creeping up due to a global rise in food prices and last July's hike in the country's consumption tax from 5 percent to 7 percent.

The Trade and Industry Ministry has projected that Singapore's inflation rate, which has hovered between 1 and 2 percent in recent years, is expected to rise to between 4.5 percent and 5.5 percent this year.

More photos at Pseudonomity

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Malaysian opposition wins 5 states, MIC President ousted, Hindraf ISA detainee wins

  • Malaysian opposition take over 4 new states - Penang, Kedah, Perak, Selangor and maintains Kelantan.
  • Malaysian Indian Congress President S Samy Vellu (who the Malaysian Indians wanted removed) has suffered a defeat at the hands of PKR's Dr D Jeyakumar for the Sungai Siput parliamentary seat which he has held for nine terms.
  • Hindraf leader and ISA-detainee M Manoharan, on a DAP ticket, obtained 12,699 votes to win with a 7,184-vote majority.

PM Badawi: 'We've lost, we've lost'

These were the only words which Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi could muster when quizzed on the ruling coalition's shocking defeat in five states.

Abdullah was posed with the question during a press conference at the Putra World Trade Centre in Kuala Lumpur. He was accompanied by his wife Jeanne, deputy Najib Abdul Razak and other BN leaders.

The prime minister added that he will make a media statement after analysing the results in detail.

Anwar ushers in 'a new dawn for Malaysia'

A triumphant PKR leader Anwar Ibrahim described the victory of the opposition parties in five states and its breach of Barisan Nasional's two-third majority in Parliament as "a defining moment" in the history of the nation and the opening of "a new chapter."

"The people have voted decisively for a new era where the government must be truly inclusive and recognises that all Malaysians, regardless of race, culture or race are a nation of one," he told a packed press conference at his residence in Segambut, Kuala Lumpur.

"The people have expressed in no uncertain terms that they want accountability, transparency, and the rule of law."

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Mahathir: Remove MIC president S Samy Vellu

The problems plaguing the Indian community could be resolved by removing MIC president S Samy Vellu who stifled Indian voices, said former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad yesterday

In the second part of an exclusive interview with the Malaysian statesman, Mahathir said removing the MIC leader would allow more Indian voices to be heard.

“I know their main grouse is not with me, their main grouse is with Samy Vellu because with him there, another Indian has been deprived of the chance to come up,” he said

Read more in MalaysiaKini: Malaysiakini is available for FREE for one week from March 4 - 10, 2008

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Malaysian Tamil Protest Songs CD

Amazing creative idea! A mystery Tamil CD that is currently being circulated in Malaysia. The melodies are borrowed from the latest Tamil movie hits like Chennai 600018, Chittiram Pesuthadi and Thiruvilayadal, but the “sharp” lyrics sing of local troubles.

HINDRAF leaders’ habeas corpus application rejected

26 Feb 08
The New Straits Times

The High Court here today rejected habeas corpus applications from five leaders of the Hindu Rights Action Force (Hindraf), who are currently being detained under the Internal Security Act (ISA).

Judicial Commissioner Zainal Azman Ab Aziz said the order for their detention issued by the Internal Security Minister last Dec 13 had conformed to the law.

The five detained are lawyers M. Manoharan, 46, V. Ganabatirau, 34, P.Uthayakumar, 46, R. Kenghadaran, 40 and former bank officer K. Vasantha Kumar, 34,.

In his judgment, Zainal Azman said the minister concerned, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi had adhered to all provisions of law and regulations under the Act to order their detention for two years at the Kamunting detention centre in Taiping.