Posts Tagged ‘Kedah’

Thaipusam holiday in Kedah soon?

July 15th, 2013
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I know, got plenty of serious things to blog about….am still compiling materials. In the mean time, what PR govt failed to do in last 5 years may come back to haunt it. Newly elected BN govt is saying that wheels are set in motion to make Thaipusam a public holiday in Kedah. Not sure if its possible by 2014 (still got 7 months++). If it succeeds, then it will look bad on PR especially the PKR reps who were even EXCO in the state. If the promised Tamil schools are completed by next election and no other controversies, then can say the Indian votes in Kedah are secured for BN for GE14.

Let’s see how this progresses…(and back to more serious stuff like conversion and IPTA intakes — coming up soon)


 Kedah is likely to get a public holiday for the Hindu festival of Thaipusam, in keeping with an election promise of the Barisan Nasional.

The application for a Thaipusam public holiday is to be discussed at the weekly meeting of the state executive council on Wednesday, said State Religion, Indian and Siamese Community Affairs, Human Resources and Tourism Committee chairman Mohd Rawi Abd Hamid.

“I hope the outcome of the meeting will bring good news to Hindus in Kedah because the time has come for Thaipusam to be a state public holiday as Kedah has almost 20,000 Hindus,” he said after a visit to the site of the Sri Ramakrishna Organisation building in Alor Semadon, here, Sunday.

The Sri Ramakrishna Organisation was established to conduct free motivation, religious, computer and music classes for youngsters. The organisation has applied for RM40,000 from the state government to conduct these classes.

Meanwhile, Kedah MIC treasurer R. Muniandy said the application for a Thaipusam public holiday was submitted a long time ago.

In 2008, the Pakatan Rakyat promised to consider the matter if it won the election but the promise remained just that after the pact came to power in the state.

“We are thankful to the BN for having taken the initiative to grant the Thaipusam public holiday much-awaited by Hindus in Kedah,” he said. – Bernama


Tamil schools not allowed to take holiday for Ponggal???

January 9th, 2013
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Another ridiculous move by the MOE if the news below is true. Previously, Tamil schools can take special holiday for Ponggal which falls in mid January.  And surely no one in the right mind will put a day before Thaipusam as replacement class! What in the world are these guys having for food? Is this only in Kedah or nationwide directive?

THE Indian community is unhappy over the Education Ministry’s decision not to allow Tamil schools to take a day off as a special holiday for the Ponggal festival which falls on Jan 14, reported Tamil Nesan.

It quoted Sungai Petani MIC division deputy chairman T.H. Subra as saying that education officers did not understand the significance of the festival.

He was also unhappy that Jan 26 had been marked as a school day to replace additional holidays given for the Chinese New Year celebration.

“This is unsuitable as most Hindu children will be busy preparing for Thaipusam, which falls on Jan 27,” he said, adding that until last year, Tamil schools were given the flexibility to take three days off a year for religious festivals.

He urged education officers to be fair to all communities.


Kedah Exco says have helped Malaysian Indian community

September 6th, 2011
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Same excuse: “cleaning up the mess of 50 years can’t be done in 3 years”. I think some of the mess can be cleared in short time, provided got willpower. It will be good for the state government to come out with its report card to show what difference has been made. Mere RM229k for 58 school is nothing to shout about as it works out to barely RM4k per school. No difference from RMK plans which allocate pittance to Tamil schools. You can say that this is something new and previous government hadn’t gave anything but “giving something is better than nothing” won’t work anymore because the other party can give something more than the “something” you are giving.  You have to move fast and come out with better plans and execution.

Wonder what is the status of the land allocation for schools. Last 3 years, don’t tell me can’t even get land for any of the 49 partially-aided schools? Hope can enlighten us on this matter.

Noticed it covers the standard stuff: school, temple, cemetery, NGOs.

A Pakatan Rakyat state assemblyman has dismissed allegations by certain quarters, including a few Indian-based NGOs, that the Kedah state government had not done much for the Indians there.

According to Bukit Selambau assemblyman S Manikumar, the state government had done its best to help the community bearing in mind its ‘limited resources’

“It’s unfair to expect Pakatan to clean up all the mess left by the Barisan Nasional in more than 50 years within three years.

“But we are trying our best to help the Indian community in the state with the limited state resources (that we have).

“We are not getting the amount of allocation that other BN ruled states get from the federal government,” said Manikumar who also heads the state’s tourism, Indians affairs and human resources portfolio.

Citing Tamil schools and temples as examples, he said the Pakatan-led state government had done far more for the state’s Indian community than MIC.

“Talking on Tamil schools, there are 58 Tamil schools in Kedah and only nine are under the fully-aided category (which means they receive full financial grants from the federal government).

“The rest 49 Tamil schools are partially-aided schools where the money given by the Education Ministry is only for the purposes of school activities and not for the upgrading of the school infrastructures.

“This year the state government allocated RM229, 000 to be disbursed to all of the 58 Tamil schools.

“The amount each school received varied depending on the needs of the particular schools,” he said.

Tamil schools and NGOs

Manikumar claimed that such disbursements to all Tamil schools had never occured during BN’s rule in the state.

According to him, in the past money came only during election campaigns when MIC will request ad-hoc allocations for certain Tamil schools and that there was no proper structure to the disbursements.

“But under Pakatan government, the allocation for Tamil schools are included officially under the state yearly budget,” he said.

He also slammed Indian-based NGOs who complained of receiving nothing from the state government.

He said unlike the BN regime which cared less for proper allocation strucure, the Pakatan state government insisted on paperworks and proper documentations.

“We had given RM7, 000 last year and RM20, 000 this year to Kedah branch of Malaysia Hindu Sangam (MHS) to carry out activities that are related to the community. The activities were to weed out social ills among Indians.

“We can’t entertain every single NGO that come without proper paperworks or documentations to back their claims.

“I proposed to the state government to approve the request by MHS based on the documentation evidence of their programmes and activities.

“MHS itself is an established NGO and was founded in 1928,” explained Manikumar, who is also the PKR’s central leadership council member.

Temple and cemetry

He also pointed out that the Kedah state government had granted a land title to the 100-year-old Sri Mahamariamman Temple at Jalan Bakar Bata in Alor Setar.

“The temple was granted a land title last year and the temple land has been gazetted under National Land Code.

“Also this year the state government approved and allocated five acres of land for a cemetry for the Hindu community in Langkawi.

“During BN’s ruling for more than 50 years MIC never took the initiative to get the land title for the temple or a Hindu cemetery in Langkawi.

“But we have done it in less than three years,” Manikumar told FMT.


Looka like no holiday in Kedah for Thaipusam

September 6th, 2011
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Its easy to promise, but not easy to deliver. Last time they never study how hard it is to get the leave approved, now telling must do more “evaluation” on this matter.  This is surely a black mark on the PR coalition for being unable to fulfill their promise.

On calls for Thaipusam to be made a public holiday in Kedah, Manikumar said the matter was still under consideration.

“We in the state government don’t have any objections but there are many rules and acts to be studied first.

“The thing is that the state holiday quota has been fully utilized and we need to amend the state constitution. Then we also need to get the consent of the Sultan of Kedah.

“At state government level we had a series of meetings on this issue but we also need to consider the opinion of the private sector, especially from the industrial sector as there are concerns on their productivity.

“So we are still evaluating many aspects on this,” explained Manikumar.


Punjabi Education Centre in Sungai Petani

August 16th, 2011
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Good effort by the community. The authorities must support the enrichment and continuation of various cultures in Malaysia and not only provide lip service or token handouts. Our diversity is a strength, not a threat.

IN a bid to preserve the Punjabi language, the Punjabi Education Centre (PEC) in Sungai Petani wants to upgrade its facilities and rope in more students to learn the language.

Its principal, Manjeet Kaur, said there had been keen interest among Punjabi parents to send their children to the centre since it started Punjabi language classes eight years ago.

“They want their children to learn the written and spoken language in order to preserve their mother tongue.

“Many children from Punjabi households prefer to speak English or Malay with their parents and grandparents. So, there is a danger of the language dying off if it is not spoken or revived for future generations,” Manjeet said.

She said intermarriages of Punjabis with people of other communities was another factor for the decline in the usage of the language.

Manjeet said the centre was now running eight classes with 62 students, aged from four to 17, every Friday at SJK(T) Mahajothi in Taman Sutera Jaya. There are 11 teachers consisting of school teachers, retirees and housewives.

“We want to upgrade the facilities so we can accommodate more students. Parents who are interested can contact us to enrol their children,” she said, adding that the centre welcomed non-Punjabi children as well if they are interested in learning the language.

Manjeet said there were 36 PECs throughout the country and they received some financial aid from the Government.

She said these centres however had to depend on local gurdwaras and donations to keep the classes going as the aid was insufficient to, among others, pay teachers and helpers.

She said they had already appealed to the Kedah government for an annual grant and hoped to receive a positive response as several other states like Penang and Perak were giving out such grants.

Those interested to know more about the centre or to help out can contact Manjeet at 016-4215658 or the centre’s chairman Tarsame Singh at 013-3601433.