Thaipusam Day Part 2

January 24th, 2008 by poobalan | View blog reactions Leave a reply »
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We reached Batu Caves at 9.45am, via Jalan Kuching. Missed the parking area, so had to go around the roundabout again to park near the Petronas station. First indication that the crowd was less is the available parking spaces at the paid areas. So, I thought what the heck, might as well look for free parking area 🙂 

The roads were quite clear at 10am.

Along the way, we were given phamplet on Sharlinie by some volunteers, We walked in using the main entrance. My friend in DLS, Geetha SMSed that crowd is normal at that time.

We saw kavadis and paal kudam bearers coming in. Seems normal. But the Sai Center blood and organ donation booth was missing from its usual place under the MRR highway.

We walked until the office building. We noticed that the crowd was less. I thought it may be due to the stalls moved back and reduced, that provided more areas to walk, thus the crowd were spread out. Masterskill and MAS Hindu Staff Society were among the booths we saw. There were no dividers between the incoming and outgoing sides of the road. People were able to cross from one side of the road to the other easily.

At the office building, we heard the MC talking at 10.15am. THE MIC bigwigs were all seated there on the verandah of the first floor – Samy Vellu, Palanivel, Nijhar, Komala, Sothinathan, Partibhan, Vigneswaran, Saravanan, Kamala Ganapathy (not listed in any order) . Nadarajah was also there. Guest of honor was Indian High Commissioner to Malaysia. There were about 30 police + FRU staff. Plus the MIC security-cum-rowdy staff which is easily more than 10 of them – all looking menacing. The public that gathered below numbered around 60-100 people, depending on the time.

Nadarajah started the first speech – praising SV for getting KL a holiday. He also talked about the new things done for Thaipusam over the years, highlighting that SV was responsible for the toilets be built many years ago. This was followed by SV’s speech. He highlighted the importance of unity and said people’s presence were proof that the campaign by certain people is not successful. A few people were seen clapping their hands (perhaps their staunch supporters plant among the crowd of less than 100 people) from time to time. As kavadi were passing by, it was difficult to hear properly what both Nadarajah and SV said. One urumi melam group that was passing by purposely hit it hard to drown SV’s voice! The event ended with garlands at 10.30am. One thing I realised, all the VIPs were not smiling. Had either a stern or worried look on their faces.

SV waved to the non-existent crowd while photographers snapped away happily. Hmm…so this is how they manipulate the story by using photos! Then, the VIP went inside (for press conference) while photographers waited outside, together with the crowd. The crowd fluctuates from time to time depending on the curiousity of the passerby. While waiting for SV, we took photos of the kavadis and crowd. The crowd was starting to swell.

We saw Parthiban leaving about 30 minutes later. Then the Indian High Commissioner also left.

At 11.45am (about 1 hour 15 minutes after the speech) SV and troops came out from building and were escorted to the Vinayagar Temple. I had the (mis)fortune of being asked to move aside by one of the MIC security (or was he undercover cop?) The crowd including curious bystanders numbered around 60-80 people. The prayers at Vinayagar temple took about 15 minutes.

We then proceed to join the crowd to go up the stairs. Continued at Part 3 (coming soon!).

 

Photos of Thaipusam including VIP speech

 

 

Photos of Samy Vellu at Batu Caves Vinayagar Temple

 

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3 comments

  1. mmuurrllyy says:

    MP: No prob.

    thank u for photos, mr.poobalan.

  2. Island Miss says:

    Thank You for your personal eye-witness account on the events of Thaipusam.

    It was very much appreciated from this corner of the world.