Posts Tagged ‘Nadarajah’

Khir Toyo blames community for delay of Indian Culture Centre

January 20th, 2008
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Hmmm…government giving 20 million, and these guys have not sent a proposal yet? I’m more than willing to step in if these guys have other better things to do. I’m sure the Indian community feels the same as well.

And Nadarajah’s response – “was unwell”.

Perhaps this is a chance for MHS to come back from death?

The so-called proposal was submitted during the meeting between Khir Toyo and Selangor temples representatives held on Jan 4. Extract from the article:

At yesterday’s dialogue, Malay- sian Hindu Council chairman Datuk R. Nadarajah also submitted to Dr Khir a proposal for the setting up of a Malaysian Indian Cultural Centre in Batu Caves. This is following an announcement by Dr Khir that there was a RM20 million state allocation for the purpose of building a cultural centre for the Indian community.

read it here.

to be fair, MHC can claim that it has only been 2 weeks since Toyo announced the allocation and they need more time to come out with comprehensive plan. But if I’m not mistaken, the plan for Hindu Cultural Centre was announced quite sometime back by Selangor govt.

Khir in dark over cultural centre proposal
Syed Jaymal Zahiid | Jan 19, 08 11:54am

The Selangor state government has blamed the Indian community’s lack of initiative for the delay in implementing the Hindu Cultural Centre project in Batu Caves.

Menteri Besar Dr Mohd Khir Toyo said that his government has allocated RM20 million for the project but has yet to receive any feed back from community leaders or the Batu Caves temple committee, headed by R Nadarajah. “I have given them the freedom to decide on how they wish to conceive the cultural centre, according to their needs and the state government has allocated RM 20 million for the project. “If the state government is to implement the project without consulting the Indian-Malaysian community, they would say the government is unfair,” said Khir when contacted by Malaysiakini.

He was commenting to a recent protest by some 100 Indian-Malaysians from the Batu Caves area over the delay in the project. These protesters claimed that Khir and his government’s three-year-old promise to build the Hindu Cultural Centre (said to be built within the vicinity of the Batu Cave temple on a 20 acre land) has not been fulfilled.

Khir explained that the reason why the project was yet to be implemented was because he has not received any proposals regarding the cultural centre from the Indian-Malaysian community. He denied press reports which quoted Nadarajah as saying that the temple had submitted a blueprint and proposal to Khir on Jan 4.

Khir said he was shocked to discover that the proposal submitted by Nadarajah was actually a proposal of merely landscape alterations for the Batu Caves temple and not the blueprint for the cultural centre. “So why accuse me of lying? You ( Selangor Indian-Malaysian community) give the proposal, we will study it and if approved, it will be implemented immediately,” said Khir.

Nadarajah, when contacted, said that he was unwell and could not comment on the matter.

As for the 100 local residents who protested over the delay in the project, Khir believed the event did not reflect the opinions of majority of the Selangor residents. “Most of the protesters were PKR supporters. They are just desperately trying to manipulate the situation to gain support. I suggest they get their facts right,” he said.

To counter allegations that the delay in the project was racially motivated, Khir argued that his government has implemented the Chinese and Malay cultural centres respectively. Khir said both the Chinese and Malay cultural centres are currently undergoing development though he could not elaborate on the details.

Krishnasamy cremation

January 13th, 2008
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Even the sky shed tears during cremation


TANGKAK: The late Tenggaroh assemblyman Datuk S. Krishnasamy’s remains were cremated at the Kwang Ee Crematorium near here at about 5.40pm yesterday. 

MIC president Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu and other state as well as national MIC leaders attended the cremation. The moment Krishnasamy’s body arrived at the crematorium, it started raining heavily until after the cremation. An MIC member from Segamat said the rain were the “tears of God who cried over the death of a very kind man”. 

While temple priests were reciting prayers, Samy Vellu was seen wiping tears from his eyes. 

Segamat MIC division chief A. Nadarajah said Krishnasamy was a good leader and had no known enemies, including within the party. He said he had known the assemblyman for many years and knew how caring he was, adding that the Indian community in Labis had lost a very helpful leader. Labis MIC Youth chief A Sivarajah said MIC had lost a considerate leader who always thought about the people, especially the Indians in Johor.  

In SEGAMAT, the crowd came with wreaths and penned condolence messages in a book placed outside the late assemblyman’s house. Family members and relatives wept as the cortege left the house at 3.30pm.  

Earlier in the morning, Krishnasamy’s second child Rajkumar, 33, thanked everyone for their support and said that his father had worked tirelessly to ensure no community was left out in the government’s development programmes.  The family also asked the press not to speculate and allow the police to investigate the killing.

Samy Vellu blasted by other Malaysian participants

January 10th, 2008
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Samy blasted for 'lies and half-truths'
K Kabilan | Jan 10, 08 4:49pm

Several Malaysian participants at a just concluded annual meeting of the Indian diaspora in New Delhi have expressed disappointment with the 'lies and half-truths' of MIC president S Samy Vellu on the Indian community’s plight in Malaysia.

They are dismayed with Samy Vellu, who is also the works minister, for portraying a positive picture of the Indian Malaysians’ plight to the other participants of the 'Pravasi Bharatiya Divas'. 

The two-day conference, which ended yesterday, attracted thousands of people of Indian origin to the Indian capital.

“He was asked by everyone here as to what is happening to the Indians in Malaysia. On every occasion he told them that everything was fine and that we are doing very well,” said S Nadarajah, a Kuala-Lumpur-based management consultant who attended the meeting in his personal capacity to represent the ‘India Baru‘ (community members with a new awareness).

“He told the participants and the Indian media that there were no cases of the Indian community being marginalised in Malaysia. He kept repeating these lies and half-truths throughout the meeting,” he told Malaysiakini today.

Nadarajah also said that Samy Vellu had played down the impact created by the Hindu Rights Action Force (Hindraf), stating that the movement was only interested in 'creating trouble'.

“He refused to acknowledge that Hindraf had managed to create some awareness among the Indian community in Malaysia,” added Nadarajah, who is still in New Delhi.

Samy’s angry interview

Samy Vellu, who led a 70-member delegation from Malaysia, which included several MIC leaders and local businessmen, was a guest speaker in one plenary session and had various other speaking engagements and media interviews throughout the conference.

He was also constantly mobbed by the Indian media who were keen to find out about the true situation of the Indian community in this country. In several media interviews, Samy Vellu had said that the Indian community was not being marginalised and that they were 'misled' by Hindraf.

Yesterday, in an interview on TV3, he also lashed out at several Malaysians who were eager to dispute him in New Delhi.

“Here I am telling the Indians that we are all doing well and that the Indian community in Malaysia is well taken care of and yet there are some individuals who rebut me by stating the opposite,” he told TV3.

He even named Nadarajah as one such person, claiming that he (Nadarajah) was a PPP member who had deviated from BN principles by attacking the government in India.

Nadarajah denied today that he was a PPP member. This was confirmed by PPP as well.

“I am here on my own. I am not a PPP member. And there is nothing wrong in telling the world the truth about how the Indian Malaysians are being neglected,” he said.

“If Samy Vellu thinks he can get away with his lies by turning the table against me, he is very wrong. I might even sue him for defaming me,” he added.

MIC’s misleading booklet

Another Malaysian participant said that the MIC was on a campaign in New Delhi to portray a completely wrong picture.

“They have distributed a 20-page colour booklet to all participants here on the wonderful living conditions of the Indians in Malaysia,” he said, adding that the booklet had glaringly left out so many issues involving the community.

“MIC proudly claims to be the sole custodian of the Indian community in Malaysia in the booklet. Who gave them that right? After all, it is the failure of MIC and Samy Vellu which is the root cause of the Indian community’s problems today,” added the KL-based entrepreneur.

Speaking on behalf of several other like-minded individuals, the participant also accused Samy Vellu of misinforming the Indian media.

“When the rest of us are asked about the plight of the community, we tell them the situation as it is. We tell them what Hindraf is and what happened during the Nov 25 rally. We tell them that there are areas which the Indians have been ignored by the government,” added the businessman.

He said that when Samy Vellu spoke to the Indian media, he merely brushed aside these issues and would keep repeating that the Indians in Malaysia are doing well.

“His often repeated mantra is that the government is doing all that it can to help the community, that the MIC is the sole representative of the community and that Hindraf is an irrelevant force,” he said.

Duty bound to defend

Makkal Osai‘s assistant news editor SV Muthamilmannan, who is in New Delhi for the conference, said that Malaysian participants were a hot favourite among the Indian media.

“The journalists were not just after Samy Vellu but were also interested in knowing the real situation from non-political Malaysian participants,” he told Malaysiakini.

“Some of these participants were blunt with their assessment while there were others who used the Indian media to send a message that it was time for Samy Vellu to go.

“Generally they told about how economically poor the community was and how it was being pushed further down,” he added.

The Indian newspapers and television stations have given Samy Vellu a good coverage and to balance it up, they have also given his critics some coverage too, added the veteran journalist.

A MIC leader in the Samy Vellu entourage explained that his boss was duty-bound by BN and government principles to defend the government’s records in the international arena.

“Personally, he might feel otherwise but he can never say it out in the open as he is part of the government and he has to stand by the government,” said the leader who requested anonymity.

“He is doing his duty in explaining to the Indian government and others here that the MIC is taking good care of the community. At the same time, what many don’t realise is that on the ground, the party is working very hard to address all the community’s issues,” he said.

batu caves improvements for thaipusam

January 7th, 2008
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Batu Caves gears up for Thaipusam

By : Veena Babulal

KUALA LUMPUR: More than 1.5 million people are expected to converge on the Batu Caves temple here for the Thaipusam celebration.

With two weeks to go before the festival on Jan 23, preparations are in full swing to ensure better crowd control and facilities.

Among others, the temple committee will be spending about RM20,000 a day during the festival to treat the "prayer milk" which coagulates in the drain.

There are also 25 new permanent toilets near the Sri Venkatajalapathi temple.

These will complement the 80 toilets at the Sri Sanes-warar Temple located 500 metres away.

The temple committee has also come up with a better rubbish collection system.

Thirty cleaners will be hired on two-hour shifts throughout the five-day festival period. The rubbish will be placed in three stationary compactors which are able to crush up to 24,000kg of rubbish an hour.

The crushed waste will then be stored at a transfer station where it would remain until it is sent to the landfill.

The temple committee is also seeking the help of the Selayang Municipal Council to keep the beggars away from the 6.5ha temple complex during the festival.

"We have so many things to deal with to ensure that the celebration proceeds smoothly.

"Text messages calling for a boycott of the celebration is the last thing on our minds," said Sri Maha Mariamman temple chairman Datuk R. Nadarajah.

He was referring to text messages that have been circulating urging Hindus to boycott the Thaipusam celebration at Batu Caves.

The text messages claimed that the temple committee had allowed the police to enter the temple complex during the Hindu Rights Action Force (Hindraf) rally in November to disperse the supporters who had gathered there.

"This is propaganda against Hinduism. No one from any religion will call for a boycott against a temple or any religious place," Nadarajah said.

"You do not have to support me or contribute to the temple but don't boycott the temple.

"Don't worry or panic and spread rumours. There will be two FRU (Federal Reserve Unit) trucks as usual and the Selangor police force will be here on Jan 23 to handle the crowd," he said.

Yesterday, the temple committee started registering traders who would be setting up shop during the festival. By noon, some 260 of the 345 lots had been snapped up.

A successful applicant, Ka-thirasan Kannusamy, said he had faith that it would be business as usual during the festival.

"I've also received the text message but I consider it a rumour.

"In my six years of trading in textiles during the Thaipusam celebrations here, the crowd has never gone down and it's more likely to increase this year," said the 56-year-old.

thaipusam at batu caves minus indians?

January 6th, 2008
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Hmmm..if many indians don't go to batu caves in two weeks time, pity all the foreign tourists! Perhaps the organisers can hire the many foreign workers and dark-skinned malaysians to provide cover, just in case.

businessmen may also think about setting up their stalls in other locations as a backup plan since even if the crowd is there, but don't spend much, will affect their business. Other locations like Penang, JB, Ipoh, Kuala Selangor, Teluk Intan, Port Klang, Klang etc will surely see bigger crowd this year.
Boycotting Batu Caves for Thaipusam?
K Kabilan | Jan 5, 08 4:23pm

A movement is fast gaining momentum on the ground to canvass support among the Indian community to boycott the Batu Caves temple for the Thaipusam festival which falls in Jan 23.

Short message services (SMSes) and emails are being circulated asking people not to fulfill their spiritual vows in Batu Caves following the temple committee’s role in allowing the police to violently disperse a gathered crowd in the early hours of Nov 25.

So far no one has claimed leadership or responsibility for the boycott call but the feedback from the ground seemed to indicate that it is a random act of protest propagated by unknown individuals.

“As mark of respect for all fellow brothers and sisters who were part of the Nov 25 rally, we will fulfill all our spiritual vows at other temples in Malaysia except Batu Caves during Thaipusam,” said one such SMS making its rounds in recent weeks. Other SMSes with similar messages have also been in circulation lately.

The SMSes refer to the violent dispersal by police of a large crowd who had gathered peacefully at the compound of the Batu Caves temple in the early hours of that day last year.

The crowd had arrived there prior to participating in the much-talked about Hindu Rights Action Force (Hindraf) organised rally in Kuala Lumpur later that morning.

The police have said that they had acted only after they were called in by the Batu Caves temple management committee, headed by R Nadarajah.

Nadarajah (photo) had defended the temple’s actions by saying that the crowd had trespassed into the temple after closing hours and in the process had caused severe damages to the temple’s properties.

Thaipusam is one of the most important festivals for the Hindus. It is dedicated to Lord Muruga and celebrates the victory of good over evil. In Malaysia, Batu Caves has been the centre of the celebration for years, attracting about a million visitors on that day every year.

An angry community

One annual Batu Caves visitor, S Sivalingam from Pasir Penampang in Selangor told Malaysiakini that the calls for the boycott was likely to be heeded in his area.

“Every year bus loads of devotees from this place and the surrounding estates will make the pilgrimage to Batu Caves. This year lots of people are asking us not to go after what the temple has done to the people who were there on Nov 25,” he said.

He said that calls for the boycott has come not just via the SMSes, but also from local community leaders and from fellow residents themselves.

“They talk openly about Hindraf and how Nadarajah and his committee members have failed to support the fight for Indian rights,” he added.

He admitted the local Indian population in his area and the surrounding areas – which have long been strong BN supporters – were angry with the manner Hindraf supporters and protesters were treated in both Batu Caves and Kuala Lumpur city centre on Nov 25.

“The feeling is that our political parties have failed us. Our temples have failed too. So why must we continue giving our support to them,” asked Sivalingam, a 43-year-old businessman.

Bloggers too have joined along in asking the people to boycott Batu Caves this year.

“Perhaps we should teach them (the Batu Caves committee) by going to Penang and Malacca for Thaipusam. Let them lose their revenue,” wrote a blogger.

“Public solidarity is paramount in this symbolic effort to achieve the objectives and show that it is not easily quelled. Let's hit them where it naturally hurts most – $$$,” wrote another blogger.

Hindraf denies involvement

A priest in a small temple in Kapar K Munian said that he was worried that devotees from his temple would take “their fight against the wrong party”.

“The anger should not be focussed at the deity in the temple. It is after all Lord Muruga’s day. We go there to pray to him. If the anger is against the temple committee, find some other way to show it. Let’s not ask people not to go to Batu Caves to pray,” he pleaded.

Hindraf coordinator RS Thanenthiran (photo), when contacted, denied that his organisation was the mover behind the call for the boycott.

“How can we ask people not to pray. Of course we at Hindraf are angry with the Batu Caves temple committee, but that doesn’t mean we can ask people to boycott Lord Muruga,” he said.

“It is a temple and we will not stop people from praying there. But if it is their choice to boycott, we can’t do anything about that,” he added.

Batu Caves temple officials when contacted said that they are aware of the calls to boycott the temple for Thaipusam.

“But we are not worried about this. We are sure the devotees will continue to come here to worship,” said an official.

Protest the right way

Similar strong sentiment was espoused by MIC vice president S Veerasingam, who was confident that devotees will not boycott Batu Caves for Thaipusam.

“As usual thousands will turn up at Batu Caves and other places to fulfill their vows. Do not bring negative thoughts into religious festivals,” he told Malaysiakini.

A long time kavadi-bearer at Batu Caves, P Batu Malai said that he would surely fulfill his vows by carrying a kavadi this year too at Batu Caves, although he was angry with the manner the temple committee handled the crowd on Nov 25.

“I was in the crowd and I know how the temple committee worked hand in hand with the police in getting us out of the temple compound,” he claimed.

“But that will not stop me from going there for Thaipusam. However I will not pay a single sen to the temple for any of its projects and charity drives. Neither will I be standing around to hear MIC president S Samy Vellu’s annual speech for Thaipusam at Batu Caves,” he added.