Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Despite ban, Hindraf continues to attack government

KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 3 - The Hindu Rights Action Force (Hindraf) continues to speak up against the government, this time scoffing at Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak's statement that the plight of Malaysian Indians is being looked into by a special Cabinet committee chaired by him.
Despite its recent banning, its chairman P. Waytha Moorthy called the statement made at the government's Deepavali open house yesterday "empty talk" and mere "eyewash" and insisted that authorities must state the initiatives "in dollars and cents."
"The DPM, who is also the Finance Minister, should make a concrete announcement of an allocation of funds to uplift the socio-economic condition of Indians in the country. Enough of setting up special Cabinet committees and all the years of empty promises," he said in a statement to the press.
"Malaysian Indians have woken up and can no longer be cheated with mere promises. The government of the day has to be serious and come up with a concrete plan of how to address the issue instead of giving piecemeal solutions and empty promises," Waytha demanded.
He added that these promises were made every "Deepavali" and "MIC annual general assemblies," where Indians are made to believe that "their plight is being looked into" and "help is just around the corner".
"We have been hearing this for the past 51 years and no Malaysian Indian would believe this apart from the MIC cronies who live and thrive on the 'biscuits' thrown at them by Umno.
"The DPM must have thought the Indians could be fooled as usual. Perhaps he would have received a thunderous applause for his goodie announcements, which no doubt must have come from all the planted MIC cronies."
Hindraf was declared illegal on Oct 15 in the aftermath of its controversial presence at the Cabinet Hari Raya open house, but it continues to lobby over issues related to the Indian community here, although not necessarily under its own name.
Just prior to Deepavali, leaders of the group, insisting they were there as ordinary citizens, were arrested as they attempted to submit a letter to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi demanding the release of five Hindraf leaders currently held under the Internal Security Act.
The Other Press