Tuesday, March 2, 2010

HRP aims to create Indian-majority areas

from www.freemalqaysiatoday.com website

Mon, 01 Mar 2010 18:10

GEORGETOWN: The Human Rights Party (HRP) launched its Prai voters’ registration campaign as part of its strategy to create Indian-majority constituencies in the country.

HRP believes the Prai constituency could be the launch pad for its political quest to create at least 15 Indian-majority federal and state seats across the country.

Prai has 14,175 registered voters, including 5,074 Indians or 36 percent.

Prai comes under Batu Kawan parliamentary seat. Both seats are now being held by Penang Deputy Chief Minister 2 P Ramasamy.

HRP aims to register about 4,100 more Indians as voters to turn Prai into an Indian-majority state seat.

HRP pro-tem secretary-general P Uthayakumar launched the campaign during the Singhamuga Kaliamman Kovil ‘Masi Maham’ festival in Teluk Bahang today.

He said that the Prai state constituency would be a key seat for the party to achieve its “Malaysian Indian political empowerment strategy” across the country.

Uthayakumar blamed the current predicament faced by working- class Indians on the non-existent of a single Indian majority constituency.

In Penang, HRP plans to create Batu Kawan and Prai as Indian- dominated seats.

Batu Kawan has 47,378 voters with Indians forming 22.8 percent or 10,802, making it among the federal seats with the largest percentage of Indian voters.

“By having Prai as a Indian majority seat, HRP and Indians would have a more powerful direct say in the state policies.

“We can demand for better treatment for Indians from the state government,” said Uthayakumar.

He added that HRP was pursuing its empowerment strategy because Indians could no longer trust any of the elected representatives either from Barisan Nasional or Pakatan Rakyat.

“All these Indians representatives are mere mandores, not policy or decision-makers,” he said

Hindraf adviser N Ganesan pointed out that the current stateless status of many Penang Indians, who were living without proper identity documents, and landless 28 Tamil schools were major issues in Penang.

Other issues are lack of education, scholarships, job and business opportunities, and virtually non-existent career growth for Indians in both public and private sectors.

He said the indiscriminate demolition of Indian traditional village Kampung Buah Pala had certainly stirred up Indian sentiments.

He said despite having two Indian MPs and five Indian state representatives, Pakatan government has until today ignored and neglected its duty to address the Penang Indian plight