Thursday, April 17, 2008

Letter to WOAT, Geneva from WMP

World Organization Against Torture
OMCT International Secretariat
PO Box 218,
rue du Vieux-BillardCH-1211
Geneva 8
Phone: + 41 22 809 4939
Fax: + 41 22 809 4929

15th April 2008

Attn: Ms Alexandra

Dear Sir,
I refer to the teleconversation we had earlier today and thank you for for agreeing to see me in such short notice and for your understanding on the seriousness of the matter.
I wish to bring to your kind attention the fact that Mr.P.Uthayakumar is a Human rights Defender and a prisoner of Conscience detained by the Malaysian Government without trial since 13th December 2007 together with four others for his active involvement (legal advisor) in my movement which advocate the protection of serious violations of Human Rights involving the ethnic minority Indian community in Malaysia.
Mr.P.Uthayakumar is a diabetic and has been for the past 12 years. His medication amongst others includes Glucophage (850mg) and Diamicron. He was admitted at the Taiping General Hospital,Perak Malaysia on the 8th April 2008 for the below stated reasons:sugar level at 18.8 , being three times more than the normal level of 6. This medically, is a dangerous situation and combined with other factors can cause serious harm.Protein and Uric acid levels, also very high.For the past month or so P.Uthayakumar had not been given the above medication although it was prescribed by doctors.Mr Uthayakumar’s family members had handed the necessary medication to a prison officer Chief Inspector Ayob but they are now told those medicines “went missing”. A report was lodged to the Taiping Prisons director Mr.Yasuhimi but to no avail.Last Thursday 13/03/2008 Mr.P.Uthayakumar’s lawyer Ms Santha Devi Velusamy handed over his diabetic medication to En. Shaharam a prisons officer but Mr.Uthayakumar never received the same. A request was made in writing to the Prison Director Mr. Yasuhimi on 17/03/2008 and still to no avail. Then on 18/03/2008 Mr Uthayakumar was referred to the prison’s clinic hospital assistant (H.A.) (and not a qualified doctor) who wanted our client to take some other medication. The said H.A. informed our client that the Prisons Director Mr. Yasuhimi refuses to hand over our client’s medication to our client.
P. Uthayakumar being a diabetic is not provided with a diabetic diet. He has no choice but to consume normal meals at the prison. The food prepared at the prison is quite often ‘Malay style’ and contains high sugar. It is a known fact that the Malay community consumes large amount of sugar in their diet.He had made 6 written attempts to see the Director of Taiping Prison (Kem Tar) , about his much needed medication and diet. However the Director did not reply nor did he make any attempts to see him.
Further, attempts to provide the above medicine to P.Uthayakumar, by his lawyers and family was prohibited by the Prison authorities. On the family visit to the hospital on 07/04/08, at 9pm, P.Uthayakumar looked very fragile and weak. He was hand-cuffed to the bed despite being very ill. The family were informed that he was not on any particular diabetic diet and was still being given rice and other sugar products for meals.Mr.P.Uthayakumar was yesterday discharged prematurely despite his blood sugar level being recorded at 13.5. ( normal being 6 ) We believe this was deliberately done upon pressure by the Police and Prison authorities on doctors to discharge him.
Since being discharged and taken to Kamunting prison he was again not given medication for about 20 hours even that upon various complaints made by him.
His diet is still the same and it appears they are still serving him with food which contains high sugar level.
During his stay in Hospital Mr.Uthayakumar was informed by the doctor that there is some damage to his eyesight ( retinopathy) and his heart muscles may have been damaged but that only be confirmed after an ECO cardiogram test which is fixed on 28th April 2008. There is excessive urea and protein in his blood system and his blood pressure is still very high and despite all this he has been discharged.
There is no resident doctor or visiting doctor at the detention centre and in cases of emergency he has to be rushed to Taiping Hospital which is about an hour drive and with no modern medical facilities.
Mr.Uthayakumar’s family wishes he be taken urgently to a reputable Private Hospital on an urgent basis (they are prepared to bear the medical costs) or the Kuala Lumpur General Hospital for immediate treatment and a thorough medical check up be done to assess his medical condition.
The continuous elevated blood sugar level is continuously contributing to worsening his eye condition and the risk of silent heart attack.
This is a serious violations of Mr.Uthayakumar’s right and is deliberately done to exert torture cruel and inhumane punishment on him.
The other 4 prisoners are as follows:
Mr. M. Manoharan
Mr. R. Kengadharan
Mr. B. GanapathyRao
Mr. T. Vasanthakumar

We have also received information from the prisoners of their poor living conditions;
1. They are kept in solitary confinement for more than 16 hours a day like common criminals
2. No proper diet given according to their health conditions. At least 2 are believed to be diabetic patients. 1 is a vegetarian and he lives only on biscuits and bread.
3. Severe mental torture inflicted on them to confess for crimes they didn't commit
4. Poor sleeping conditions i.e. they are only given an inch thick mattress foam on the floor.
5. The keys to their cells are kept some distance away in the administration block leading to potential delay in assistance in event of emergencies
6. They do not have access to Television, computers or up to date books, magazines and newspapers in the resource centre
7. limited visiting rights and time with family members - they are guarded by wardens during visits
8. Poor quality of food.
9. They are denied their right to worship.
No access to temples or prayer rooms or time allocated. The family members are unable to make a formal complaint for fear that they might lose their limited visiting rights and the prisoners may be subject to unknown internal disciplinary actions.
I now write to you to urgently seek the help of Mr. Kofi Annan who is now the President of this foundation to make representations to the Malaysian Government to stop this treatment of the already defenceless Mr.Uthayakumar and the other four.I also urge your esteemed organization to immediately send a fact finding mission to Malaysia to inquire on his health condition independently and make the necessary recommendations to the Malaysian Government.
I would be presenting more details at our meeting on the 17th April 2008.Yours faithfully

P. Waytha Moorthy

Memo to PM by Uthaya's mother at PM Office, Putrajaya

Hi all,

On the 15th April 2008, Uthaya Kumar's mother, Madam Kalaivany lead a team of HINDRAF Coordinators and her family member to hand over a memo to Malaysian Prime Minister to review urgently on Uthayakumar medical treatment in Kamunting Detention Camp.

Many supporters from all over the country came down to Putrajaya to support Uthaya's mother for her action to bring the matter up to PM's attention. There were about 200 supporters waiting near the side wing of PM's office from 10 am.

Mr RS Thanethiran, National Hindraf Coordinator and YB Manoharan (MP of Tk Intan) whom is also HINDRAF's National Legal Coordinator were there and had given brief explaination to the media before the group went into the PM's office. At outside there are many supporter carrying many 'manila' cards with various slogan such as :-
and many more ...

At 11 am, Uthayakumar mother with 20 members went into the JPM office ground lobby and only 10 members were allowed to further into PM's Office in level 5. They are Uthaya's Mother, Sister, Sister in law, YB Mano, Mr RS Thanethiran, Mr Kannan and some Hindraf coordinators. This group were escorted by 5 policemen, 2 SB and a security guard all the way to PM's secretary office.

The PM's Senior Private Secretary, Dato Ahmad Hj Yaacod was the one whom attended the group Level 5 as he claims that the PM is busy on duty.

Uthaya's mother started with her appeal pledge to Dato Ahmad to give urgent medical attention to her son Uthaya. She request PM should personally involve in this matter as his son's condition is getting worse. She have never seen Uthaya so sick ever before in her life. She also told that he had always in control of his diabetics though he had this disbetics for last 12 years as he is discipline guy on heatlh matter. He had never fail to talk his medicine before. While her recent visit of Uthaya at Taiping GH, his condition were very weak. She told that Uthaya was not given diabetic medicine for more than 1 month even though he had request almost 6 time to see the Camp Cheif Warden about this matter.

The denial of his diabetic medicine and continous supply of non diabetic food with high sugar and starch have caused serious health problem to her son. High sugar level were not monitored periodically as advice by Doctors. This had caused his sugar level rose 18.8 ( 3 times than a normal sugar level). She also told that he had complained about cheast pain and eye sight problem but no necessary check up were done in Taiping GH. He was later prematurely discharged from the hospital even his sugar level were high at 13.5 ( 2 times higher). She told that his medical check up is only given on 28th April though primary check up shows that there is irregularity in his heart.

She urged the PM to immediately look into his son's healthcare. The family want Uthaya to be transfered to IJN and they are willing to bear all expenses. She said that she is also sick and took all the effort to see the PM and her previous appeal and police report against the Chief Warden of Kamunting Camp were not given any attention neither by IGP nor the Home Minister.

Later YB Mano also have added that he went visited Uthaya at Kamunting Camp as his legal advisor on the day he was admitted and found that he was very weak. He also urge that this matter need to brought urgently to PM's attention as it involve basic human right of a detainee. This matter is been seen by all the Human Right Watch all over the world and have been seriously condemned for the premature discharge as well denial of medicine to Uthaya. He urge the PM to prompt his action as the Malaysian in general will further lost the faith in PM's administration.

Mr Thanethiran, Hindraf National Coordinator added that the PM has to seriously look into the welfare and health of Uthaya urgently. He also said that HINDRAF has been offering themselves to the PM to solve all the problem. It have the 3rd time HINDRAF attempt to seek PM attention but could see him. Thanethiran told that Malaysian Indian in large wants all the HINDRAF leaders to be released from ISA unconditionally and they are very angry in the manner with recent incident where the health of the detainee were not taken care and suspect some myterious activities going behind PM's knowledge.
He reaffirmed that HINDRAF is ever ready to talk to PM on the any matters and for now he wants PM to take immediate attention on Uthaya's medical treatment. He also added that there were many previous cases where an ISA detainee were given immediate medical treatment upon the medical treatment, example were Mr Karpal were transfered to Penang GH within 24 hours upon a request by his daughther to then PM, Tun Mahathir and also when Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim was allowed medical treatment by his family choice will still under detention. So why double standard been practised upon HINDRAF leaders !!

Ms Shanthi, Uthaya's sister in law whom also a lawyer raised concern about the intention of Kamunting Camp by denying medicine to Uthaya for more than one month. This had cause seriious health probelem to Uthaya. His blood sugar level rose 3 times to 18.8, his uric acid were high and his pottasium level were low. His is all indication that unattended diabetic had caused some of the organs to malfunction. She added that even after been prematurely discharged from Taiping GH, the camp delibrately failed to provide diabetic medicine to Uthaya after 20 hours. She quoted that there are many cases were people have fell into coma or had heart attack for not taking medicine for few days. She hold the PM and government held responsibilities if anything goes wrong to Uthaya's health or life !! She hope that there is no ploy to silently kill Uthaya during his detention.

Finally Dato Ahmad Hj Yaacob had give assurance that he will delivery the strong message and appeal from Uthaya's mother and Hindraf coordinators to the PM as soon as possible. He had taken contact numbers of Uthaya's family, Hindraf National Coordinator and Legal Advisor numbers to inform on the outcome.

The meeting ends about 12 pm and outside PM's office hundreds of supporters chanting Long Live HINDRAF, Long Live Uthaya, Long Live Makkal Sakthi.

Mr Thanethiran and YB Mano gave press conference outside the office back with supporters about the meeting inside. Both stressed that PM should take immediate action as claim that he realized his mistakes previously. The crowd dispearse peacefully after that with full cooperation of the policemen.

Message to PM - Ignorance is Not a BLISS now
Report by Karna57