PETALING JAYA: The self-styled leader of Hindu Rights Action Force (Hindraf) P. Waythamoorthy (pic) yesterday challenged the Malaysian government to revoke his citizenship.
He said this would give him the opportunity to bring his case to the International Court of Justice and Malaysia could then defend their case against him.
Waythamoorthy, who is in the United Kingdom after he fled from Malaysia, said this in response to Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Datuk Seri Mohamed Nazri Aziz's statement in The Malay Mail yesterday that he was not welcomed in the country due to his stand to abolish Article 153 of the Federal Constitution which involves Malay rights.
Mohamed Nazri also said that the large majority of "our Tamil brothers" were loyal to the constitution but only wanted a bit more equality and a reasonable share of the economic cake. Waythamoorthy also reiterated that he wanted the Malaysian government to return his passport, which he said was revoked in April 2008.
"Allow me to come back and I am willing to face any criminal charges, including treason which carries the death penalty for questioning Malay privileges as suggested by the Malacca Chief Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Ali Rustam in 2007," he said in an email reply to The Malay Mail.
Waythamoorthy said he would not apologise to the government when asked whether he was willing to do so for them to allow him to come home.
"There is no issue of apology as I have always spoken the truth and sought justice for the marginalised, oppressed and suppressed Malaysian Indians," he said.
When asked to comment about a report in a local Tamil daily last week that mentioned him, Hindraf adviser N. Ganesan as well as a group from Sabah and Sarawak represented by Common Interest Group Malaysia (Cigma) activists Daniel John Jambun and Nicholas Bawin Anggat who had visited the House of Commons to enlighten the British Parliamentarians about marginalised ethnic Indians in Malaysia, he said:
"Last week’s Conference at the House of Commons by both Hindraf and the natives from Borneo is just the beginning of a series of campaigns that Hindraf will mount to challenge the unlawful and unconstitutional act of the Malaysian government."
He said Malaysia was independent for 53 years and the government had instead recolonised the non - Malays and natives from Sabah and Sarawak.
"As the fifth and sixth generation labour migrants, we are equally sons of the soil and deserve the protection of Article 8 of the Federal Constitution, which provides equality for all," he said.
Last September, Waythamoorthy had also stated that he wanted the Malaysian government to return his passport and was prepared to take responsibility for his actions, even at the risk of being detained under the Internal Security Act.
He had said the government owed him an apology and held Tan Sri Syed Hamid Albar, the former Home Minister, responsible for revoking his passport.
The rally's estimated to be 100 000 people gathered outside the Petronas Twin Towers at midnight, early Sunday morning.At least 240 people were detained, but half of them were later released. One day before the rally, police arrested three HINDRAF lawyers, P. Uthayakumar, P. Waytha Moorthy and V. Ganabatirau for sedition charges. Uthayakumar and Ganabatirau posted bail of 800 Malaysian ringgits each, but Waytha Moorthy refused bail as a sign of protest.