Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Man who torched himself dies, MPSJ blamed

By B Nantha Kumar - Free Malaysia Today

KUALA LUMPUR : Puchong MIC diivision information chief M Gunasegaran, who set himself on fire in an attempt to stop the demolition of a Hindu temple, succumbed to his injuries this morning.

In an immediate reaction, MIC Youth chief T Mohan held the Subang Jaya Municipal Council (MPSJ) responsible for his death.

The 52-year-old father of six passed away at 9.30 am this morning at Hospital Kuala Lumpur.

On Nov 8, MPSJ workers had wanted to demolish two wooden structures belonging to the Sri Srinivasa Temple in Puchong. One structure housed the temple's chariot, and the other served as a store room.

The structures were located on a land belonging to the Castlefield Tamil School. The temple committee had been using the structures on the land for the past 10 years with permission from the school.

Gunasegaran had climbed onto the rooftop of the store room, doused himself with petrol and set himself on fire, suffering 80% burns on his body.

He was initially warded at the Serdang Hospital's intensive care unit before being transferred to HKL.

Meanwhile, Mohan said that MPSJ was the “root cause” behind Gunasegaran's death.

“The council and its workers are supposed to be careful in dealing with such matters, especially when there is someone threatening to kill himself,” he added.

However, he said that MIC Youth would not take legal action against MPSJ but would assist the victim's family, should they decide to do so.

FMT could not reach Gunasegaran's family members for comments.