Uthaya and gang released

May 10th, 2009 by poobalan | View blog reactions Leave a reply »
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This guy got guts. We have to admit that. I never heard of any ISA detainee being released on their own terms. But this fella is a real thorn in the backside for them. Even in the last day, he really embarassed the police and Home Minister by REFUSING to sign the conditional release papers. The announcement to release was already made by Hishamuddin,  so what to do? They could have kept him detained, citing some “paper work” problem. Yet he was released. Why ah?

Anyway, it is a great news for the Indian community, especially on the auspicious day of Chittirai Pournami to have a braveheart to be released. The Indians who are not-so-Indians will have different opinions, but each to his own.

There was a convoy or car who were meeting up with him at Tanjung Malim. Heard that more than 100 cars accompanied him to his house in Seremban.

Below is statements by Uthaya from Malaysiakini:

P Uthayakumar, the last of the five Hindraf leaders to be released today, claimed that he was thrown out of the Kamunting Detention Camp after he refused to give in to pressures from the prison authorities to sign the conditional release papers in exchange for his freedom.

MCPX

Recollecting the events that transpired inside the Kamunting prison before he was freed this afternoon, Uthayakumar said the prison officials had dragged him out of the camp and thrown him into the prison van following his repeated refusal to sign the conditional papers.

uthayakumar hindraf taiping hospital 170209 02I stressed that there must be no conditional release. Otherwise, I would continue to stay here,” he told journalists and about 100 Hindraf supporters at the gate of the Kamunting Detention Camp, Perak, where he was held for 18 months under ISA detention.

According to him, his ordeal started at 8am when prison officials came to his cell and told him to get ready for his release in the afternoon.

He told the prison officers that he was ready to leave only if there were no preset conditions to his release.

Subsequently, Uthayakumar refused to listen to the various requests by the prison authorities to agree to his conditional freedom.

Uthayakumar also claimed that he was tricked into seeing the prison director who said the he could sign a release order instead of the conditional papers.

However, when I got into his office, the director gave me the conditional release papers (to sign). Again, I refused.

The Hindraf leader said when an officer read out the clauses of his conditional release papers, he closed both his ears with his hands.

“After that, a guy forcibly took me out of the office and threw me into a prison van,” said Uthayakumar.

In the melee, Uthayakumar said he hurt his right leg, near his damaged toe for which he had earlier sought treatment while in detention.

It is learnt that the release of the other Hindraf leaders today are subject to a number of conditions, including being barred from speaking at public functions.

‘I’m wearing the same blue pants’

Uthayakumar said he feared that he could be forced to sign the conditional release papers before he even reaches home today.

“I was told that Special Branch (officers) are waiting for me to take me to Brickfields police station to sign the papers. But I will not bow to this,” he said.

If they force me, I will not do it as I prefer going back to Kamunting prison,” he vowed.

Uthayakumar also said he was grateful for the support given by his family members, supporters and friends who had campaigned relentlessly for his release from the camp.

However, he refused to express gratitude to the government for freeing him after “514 days behind bars”.

“I won’t thank the government because I should have been brought to court in the first place and given a fair trial. But this procedure was not followed,” said Uthayakumar, who appeared haggard.

Uthayakumar and his family later went to Sri Maha Mariamal temple near Kamunting for prayers where he gave another speech to about 100 people who had gathered there.

The lawyer, who has not combed his hair nor shaved his beard since the day of his arrest on Dec 13, 2007, conceded that he may “look like a mad man”.

“Since Day One, I have grown this beard and hair, and I vowed never to shave it off (until his release).

“And these are the same blue pants that I have been wearing ever since,” he added, showing his shabby prison trousers.

Nevertheless, he said the detention had made him wiser and gave him inner strength to meet new challenges ahead and he has a few ideas on improving the livelihood of the Indian community.

At about 4.30pm, Uthayakumar along with his family left Kamunting for his mother’s house in Seremban.

Along his journey south, he made a number of pit stops where he gave impromtu speeches. He reached Rawang in Selangor at 7.40pm, followed by a convoy of about 30 cars.

At 8.50pm, a crowd of 100 Hindraf supporters, equipped with drums, were at the Labu toll in Seremban waiting for Uthayakumar’s arrival.

He arrived at his hometown to a hero’s welcome at 9.15pm. He was greeted with fireworks and an escort of about 100 cars. The Hindraf leader gave a short speech amid shouts of Makkal Sakthi.

Meanwhile, ADUN for Kota Alam Shah, YB Manoharan relates his story:

For some, 13 is considered an unlucky number but for former Internal Security Act detainee M Manoharan, it is the sacred number 13 that have given him the good, the bad, and the ugly highlights of his life.

MCPX

manoharan released from isa detention prison 090509 01Today, the Kota Alam Shah state representative is finally back in the arms of his family after serving 513 days in Kamunting prison since Dec 13, 2007.

Now that those long detention days have passed, the lawyer who was born on Sept 13, 1961 and is the 13th Selangor DAP assemblyperson is set to continue with his life and job.

The father of three also couldn’t be happier and sees his return as a gift to his mother and his wife for tomorrow’s Mother’s Day celebration.

Manoharan, who arrived at his place in Bukit Kinrara, Puchong at around 7pm with an escort car was greeted by his three children who were beaming with smiles and shouting “Papa! Papa!” on top of their lungs.

However, he was not accompanied by his wife S Pushpaneela who had been waiting anxiously for his return at the Klang police station.

Little did he know he would be brought back by the police through the station’s backdoor and the wife was waiting for him out at the front gate.

However, both husband and wife were later reunited at their home about half an hour later.

Speaking at a press conference later, the practising lawyer said that her mother’s prayer “has been answered”.

“She also told me that I should not come out alone and asked me to come back (with other Hindraf leaders) together. I am thankful that we all were released together today,” he said to her mother N Letchumy, 70, who was sitting next to him.

He was also flanked by his three children, 12-year-old twins Hariharan and Shivaranjini, and 10-year-old Ganendra.

Manoharan is among two other Hindraf leaders who were released today at Kamunting including P Uthayakumar and T Vasanthakumar.

Staying on as Kota Alam Shah representative

Describing as the past 18 months in detention as “miserable”, Manoharan however promised that he will not give up his struggle as the “Malaysian Indians urgently need help”.

manoharan released from isa detention prison 090509 06Soft-spoken and quiet since he was a little boy, Manoharan said there would be no way he could be seen as a terrorist as he would “never lift a stick to hit anybody”.

“I am not a terrorist. So please show respect to the Indians. But most important of all, there will be no need for me to resign as the Kota Alam Shah representative,” he said.

Now that he has been released, he would immediately get to work and give his best to serve his constituents.

“I will make sure Kota Alam Shah residents have the best from me because they have lost 14 months of my service and my presence and voice in the Selangor state assembly,” he said.

Manoharan further noted that his intended resignation last Saturday could have “expedited” today’s release and did not rule out the possibility that the government would want to avoid another by-election.

Besides, he said, if a by-election were held following his resignation, “it would be the first seat that BN would lose its deposit” judging from the previous strong majority he had garnered in the last general election.

“And it would be pitiful for the BN. But unfortunately or fortunately, that will not happen because I am not resigning and I’m released and I will get down to work. I am not given the opportunity to serve the public which I have always wanted to do,” he said.

Manoharan, who was composed and high spirited throughout the press conference also praised his father MS Malayalan, 70, for shaping him to be a good leader – but only different political views set them apart.

“My father has served the public throughout his year as a politician … but he’s an MIC man and still a branch leader and recently elected as a delegate … but I was born to be an opposition member from the beginning,” said Manoharan, flashing a smile to his father.

Will comply with conditions

Despite the conditional release imposed upon the 48-year-old politician, Manoharan however remained positive and vowed to comply with all the six conditions given by the Home Ministry.

manoharan released from isa detention prison 090509 02According to him, he was “happy and enlightened” with  all the six conditions as they fit his category as a state representative.

“I am very happy with the conditions set by the home minister who seems to know that I live to serve my constituents and I will comply with these conditions,” he said.

The conditions, according to him are:

(1) Have to live in a Klang area – which is in the area of IPK Klang.

(2) Not allowed to move to other places without written permission of state police chief.

(3) Not allowed to leave Klang without written permission of state police chief.

(4) Have to constantly inform the police of his whereabouts.

(5) Have to report to the police every Monday until Dec 13, 2009.

(6) Maintain peace and stability in the country.

However, Manoharan said that the hardest task he needs to take up would be rebuilding his life all over again as a lawyer now that he had lost his practice firm in Kuala Lumpur as he and the family needed to move to Klang in two weeks time.

“My detention has been miserable … I had a very good law practice and the practice is gone. I have to start all over again and start afresh. My family got into serious financial difficulties but I would like to thank all who donated towards my family.

“Without their donations, I couldn’t imagine how they would survive. It was not easy without me as the sole breadwinner. I have lost 15kg, I have suffered enough. I missed my children. No father should go through this form of suffering in the future,” he said.

There are no statements from Vasanthakumar so far.

MIC, Murugiah of PPP, MHS, MHC, etc offered thanks to the PM for the release of the detainees.

The dust has not even settled, and the rumour mill has started –  Uthaya may start a political party. Here we go again! 🙂

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1 comment

  1. Killi Valavan says:

    the moment every indians waiting has come . Surely , BN will get severe impact than GE12 . The beauty of hindraf is they are apolitical as we read uthaya screwing PR state governments as well. This is unlike some ‘leg massage rs’ here whom want indians to fell down to umno’s arrogant for their personal benefits. Go uthaya go……