Monday, July 20, 2009

Uthayakumar forms Human Rights Party - Malaysiakini

Uthayakumar launching his new party

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Hindu Rights Action Force (Hindraf) leader P Uthayakumar today announced the formation of a multiracial party called the Human Rights Party (HRP).

"We will fight our own cause... we can't count on others to do so for us," he said, adding that Pakatan Rakyat, like Barisan Nasional, is not addressing the needs of marginalised groups.

"But now the time has come for us to move forward with the Hindraf people's Makkal Sakthi wave," the pro-tem secretary general told some 2,000 supporters in Klang.

HRP will continue to champion Hindraf's 18 point-demand.

"I have identified 15 parliamentary and 38 state assembly seats... with about 20 percent to 46.2 percent Indian voters in about nine states," Uthayakumar said.

Nevertheless, he affirmed that Hindraf would remain apolitical and would be led by his brother Waythamoorthy, who is in self-exile in London.

Launches book penned in detention

Besides announcing the advent of the new party, Uthayakumar, who is a lawyer, also launched his book titled 'Malaysian Indian Political Empowerment Strategy: The Way Forward'.

According to him, the book was conceived during his 514 days in detention under the Internal Security Act.

Uthayakumar and four other Hindraf leaders were detained under the ISA in 2007 shortly after staging a mammoth street protest which drew tens of thousands of disgruntled Indian Malaysians to the streets of Kuala Lumpur.

Addressing his supporters, Uthayakumar said: "I don't want to be known as a politician. I would rather be known as a political activist."

"Our main thrust is to be the focus group in putting the Indians in Malaysia back on the mainstream development of Malaysia after 52 years of having been left out," he added.

Although the party's struggle focuses on the upliftment of the Indian community, Uthayakumar however stressed that it would not shut its doors to the plight of other communities.

Despite submitting their application to the Registrar of Societies (ROS) on June 18, HRP has yet to receive the green light.

This, according to Uthayakumar, is in stark contradiction to the Makkal Sakthi party which was registered within two weeks.