Thursday, March 3, 2011

Hindraf : Six more HRP members charged in Ipoh

Six more Human Rights Party (HRP) members were charged in the Ipoh magistrate’s court today with participating in an illegal organisation.
The six are Perak HRP chief P Ramesh, vice-president S Nagroon, Taiping coordinator K Sivakumar, and three other members, R Mohan, S Jayakumar and V Lingam.
They are alleged to have committed the offence under Section 43 of the Societies Act 1996 while partipating in an HRP-organised convoy at Jelapang, Ipoh on Feb 13.
The six accused were represented by lawyer Augustine Anthony.
Yesterday, five HRP leaders and members were also charged with the same offence at the Selayang magistrate’s court, but they refused to post bail set at RM2,500.
The five are HRP vice-president K Tamil Selvam, information chief S Jayathas, K Navakrishna, T Periasamy and S Loshna Rau.
When contacted by Malaysiakini, HRP secretary-general P Uthayakumar said that all the six charged in Ipoh were released on RM2,000 bail each.
NONEUthayakumar (left) further said that he was disappointed with the arrests and charges against HRP members.
He claimed that at 6.30am this morning, several police officers were waiting outside Lingam’s house in Ipoh. “This is a form of intimidation and harassment by them (the police),” he claimed.
Uthayakumar also mentioned that lawyers’ fees and bail charges are being paid from the HRP’s funds.
“We received contributions of close to RM100,000 from members of the public who supported the Hindu Rights Action Force (Hindraf), back in 2007. So we will be using those funds to clear up these bills,” he added.
On Feb 13, 59 HRP members and supporters in Selangor, Perak and Kuala Lumpur were arrested as police came down hard on their nationwide convoys to protest against the novel ‘Interlok‘, which is used in secondary schools.
A controversy arose following the ministry’s decision to use the novel, written by national laureate Abdullah Hussein, as a literature textbook, with several parties claiming that it contains words deemed sensitive to the Indian community.
Indian NGOs decry the book’s description of Indians in Malaysia as being from the lower caste, among other racial stereotypes.