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Triple shame for Samy Vellu in Chennai and the multiple apologies which must be made by Samy Vellu, Abdullah, IGP Musa and AG Gani Patail

Speech on “Marginalisation of Malaysian Indians” forum          
by Lim Kit Siang  

(Ayer Tawar, Saturday): I learn from a posting on my blog that the Malaysian Nanban today reported on its front page that the MIC President and sole Malaysian Indian Cabinet Minister for over 28 years, Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu suffered grave humiliation in Chennai when the Tamil Nadu chief Minister S. Karunanidhi refused to meet him, despite Samy Vellu waiting for an appointment for three days.

Samy Vellu had said when he arrived in Chennai on Dec. 30 that he would meet Indian leaders including Karunanidhi and the Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh during his visit to India to attend the three-day People of Indian Origin Conference in New Delhi starting on January 7.

He said he would explain “the real situation is concerning the Indian community in Malaysia” to the Indian leaders in view of the “negative publicity” from the Nov. 25 Hindraf demonstration which drew support from 30,000 Indians from all over the country.

Samy Vellu was made to cool his heels in Chennai, waiting for three days and repeatedly phoning up for an appointment with the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister but to no avail.

Nanban reported the displeasure of Samy Vellu at being given the cold shoulder, complaining at the ingratitude of Karunanidhi when the MIC President had treated the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister like royalty when Karunanidhi had previously visited Malaysia.

Samy Vellu has brought shame not only to himself, but to MIC, the Malaysian Indians and the Malaysian nation. For this he owes the Malaysian Indian community and all Malaysians a fulsome public apology.

This is the Samy Vellu’s first shame in Chennai.

He suffered a second shame in Chennai. I have just received a SMS from DAP MP for Bukit Mertajam, Chong Eng informing me that Makkal Osai today quoted Samy Vellu as saying that the government did not have any evidence to prove that Hindraf had connection with Tamil Tigers or terrorists when he was asked by reporters in Chennai.

If the government has no evidence that Hindraf had terrorist links with the Tamil Tigers, how can the Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Musa Hassan, the Attorney-General Tan Sri Gani Patail and the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi make public allegations about Hindraf’s terrorist links and how could the five Hindraf leaders and activists, P. Uthayakumar, V. Ganabatirau, M. Manoharan, R. Kenghadharan and T. Vasantha Kumar be detained under the infamous Internal Security Act, where a person could be detained indefinitely without trial although one is innocent?

Furthermore, how could Samy Vellu, who claims to represent the interests of the Indians in Malaysia, sit idly by and allow such gross injustice to be perpetrated on the five Hindraf leaders and activists allegedly for terrorist links – for which Samy Vellu now admits is without basis?

Samy Vellu owes the Hindraf Five, the Malaysian Indian community and all Malaysians a second public apology. Even IGP Musa, AG Gani and Prime Minister Abdullah should publicly apologise for their baseless allegations of terrorist links which they had hurled against Hindraf. Uthayakumar, Ganabatirau, Manoharan, Kenghadharan and Vasantha Kumar should be released immediately and unconditionally from ISA detention at Kamunting Detention Centre.

Now, to Samy Vellu’s third shame. This is from the latest SMS from Chong Eng. Appearing on AChennai television; a reporter asked Samy Vellu why he couldn’t stop the Minister from condemning Tamil Nadu Chief Minister. Samy Vellu answered that there were two or three Opposition MPs asking the Indian government to interfere in Malaysia’s Indian problems, and it was because of that the Minister responded.

This was a blatant lie by Samy Vellu.

The AChennai interview was referring to the very rude retort by the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Seri Nazri Aziz to wire reports that Karunanidhi had written to Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh urging him to take immediate and appropriate action to end the “sufferings and bad treatment” of Tamils in Malaysia.

Nazri warned Karunanidi to “lay off”, rebuking the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister for interfering when what happened in Malaysia had “nothing to do with Tamil Nadu”.

Nazri also made the gratuitous remark that Karunanidhi should “look at his own backyard” before interfering in Malaysian affairs and that Karunanidhi’s “own state is out of control”.

This is also where Nazri unrepentantly reiterated that he would not apologise for calling the 30,000 Indians who had supported the Hindraf rally in Kuala Lumpur on Nov. 25 as “penyangak” (crooks). There was not a single bleat of protest from MIC leaders, whether Minister, Deputy Minister, Parliamentary Secretary or MP at such unwarranted abuse and insult.

Samy Vellu owes Parliament and the nation a full public apology for telling a lie just to defend the indefensible by Nazri, as no DAP MP (I presume Samy Vellu was referring to DAP MPs) had called for the intervention of the Indian Government.

If DAP MPs had ever made such a call, Parliament, the nation and whole wide world would not be allowed to forget it, for we would have been have been the target of propaganda attacks on radio and television until the next general election is over – condemning DAP MPs as disloyal, anti-national and even as traitors!

Samy Vellu is bringing shame and dishonour to Malaysia with the pack of lies and half-truths he is trotting out to the media in India.

I call on Samy Vellu to speak the truth and to openly admit that the Indians in Malaysia had suffered long-standing political, economic educational, social, cultural and religious polarization and that a New Deal is urgently needed to correct such historic injustices for the good of the Malaysian Indians as well as the whole Malaysian nation.


* Lim Kit Siang, Parliamentary Opposition Leader, MP for Ipoh Timur & DAP Central Policy and Strategic Planning Commission Chairman

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