another indian coalition is born

January 3rd, 2008 by poobalan | View blog reactions Leave a reply »
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like it or not, Hindraf is a success. Now every samy, palani and vicky want to jump in the bandwagon and submit proposals/memorandums albeit in a air-conditioned room. Before this all were sleeping, but now since HINDRAF has paved the way, these fellows have become a bit more bold.

This coalitions seems to be a bit anti-MIC. Let's see how long they last.

Indian NGOs' community wish list
Yoges Palaniappan | Jan 3, 08 4:31pm

The Coalition of Malaysian Indian NGOs has submitted a proposal requesting Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi to establish a non-political independent task force to assist the government to overcome the plight of Indians in this country.

Coalition chairperson A Vaithilingam, at a press conference in Petaling Jaya today, said the nine-member task force was to help the prime minister design and develop specific programmes to aid the Indians.

"The terms of reference of the task force should include undertaking the programmes, monitoring, evaluating and submitting periodical reports on the implementation and progress (of the programmes)," he said.

The suggestion to form the task force was made in a preliminary statement submitted to Abdullah last Friday by the coalition, comprising of more than 120 Indian-based NGOs. A more detailed memorandum will be submitted to the premier within one month.

Vaithilingam, who described the statement as a "friendly and moderate approach to the government", said the Indian-based NGOs are willing to work together for the betterment of the community and national unity.

Asked whether the coalition will be upset if the government does not form the task force and direct MIC to handle the proposals, Vaithilingam said: "We're not dictating, we're just requesting. If the government wants to do it through the MIC, we cannot stop it."

"We're willing to work with MIC. We will send the memorandum to all political parties and ministries when it is prepared," he said.

Funding for the community

The preliminary statement also proposed the establishment of a community development fund under the PM's department to be administered by the task force.

Vaithilingam said incentives via the fund can be given to non-political NGOs to implement community empowerment programmes.

"Among the areas of concern are the problems affecting single mothers, orphans, homelessness, and squatters," he said, adding that Indian-based NGOs in particular should be given funding and other incentives to address problems where Indians are disproportionately affected.

The coalition also listed several other proposals, namely:

• Moratorium on demolitions of places of worship throughout the country pending the formulation of comprehensive guidelines and land alienation for all existing established places of worship

• All Tamil schools to be fully funded by the government; increase the proportion of non-Malay students in residential schools and vocational and technical schools

• Suitable and affordable housing made available on an equitable basis to disadvantaged Indian households: sufficient trade license to all deserving applicants irrespective of race

Commenting on the similarities of the proposals to Hindu Rights Action Force's (Hindraf) demands to the government, Vaithilingam said: "Yes, the demands may be similar. We're very open."

He also said that Hindraf is not a member of the coalition. However, he did not deny the possibilities of accepting the organisation as a member should the leaders approach the coalition.


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