Of ‘aggressive’ Hindraf who ‘raided’ PWTC and Mingguan Malaysia

Mingguan Malaysia, the Sunday edition of Utusan Malaysia, reported that there had been calls from certain individuals that Hindraf be severely dealt with by the government, especially in the wake of the movement’s ‘visit’ to the Open House hosted by Prime Minister Abdullah Badawi and other Muslim Cabinet ministers at the Putra World Trade Centre (PWTC) in Kuala Lumpur last Wednesday.

The newspaper quoted the Dean of Postgraduate and Research of the Universiti Utara Malaysia (UUM), Prof. Dr. Mohamed Mustafa Ishak, as saying that the government should take some action against Hindraf before it ‘becomes more aggressive’.

According to the newspaper, the comment was made by Mohamed following the Hindraf’s ‘raid’ on the PWTC.

Earlier, Home Minister Syed Hamid Albar had already warned Hindraf against acts that could be considered overtly ‘provocative’.

In the same news report, president of the Yayasan Dakwah Islamiah Malaysia (Yadim), Nakhaie Ahmad, urged the government to take action against any ‘extremist group’, be it Islamic or non-Islamic.

As if not to be outdone, Suhakam (Malaysia’s Human Rights Commission) Commissioner S. Subramaniam called on Hindraf leaders to opt for negotiation and discussion in their desire to achieve what they wanted from the government.

In another report in the same newspaper, UMNO Youth Exco member Mukhriz Mahathir, was quoted as having warned Hindraf not to exploit the Hari Raya Idilfitri as an opportune occasion to pressure the government to release its five leaders from ISA detention.

Mukhriz reportedly claimed that the action of more than 1,000 Hindraf members who had caused havoc to the PWTC Open House could cause anger within the ‘Muslim community’.

The so-called aggressiveness, and ‘provocative’ and ‘raiding’ Hindraf in this Mingguan Malaysia report don’t seem to sit comfortably with the accounts given by people like Haris Ibrahim about the Hindraf’s Raya visit at the PWTC. Haris, for example, reported that the Hindraf members and Haris and his friends were diplomatic, let alone rowdy and trouble-making, when they were at the Open House to meet the PM.

Perhaps Suhakam Commissioner Subramaniam and colleagues may want to conduct an investigation into this seeming reportorial discrepancy or gap. Also, NUJ (Malaysia’s National Union of Journalists) folks may also want to conduct their own inquiry as this appears to have touched on the important issue of journalistic ethics, professionalism and credibility.

See here and here for the two Mingguan Malaysia news reports.


11 Responses to “Of ‘aggressive’ Hindraf who ‘raided’ PWTC and Mingguan Malaysia”

  1. 1 Discrimination69, 5 October 2008 at 9:53 pm

    HINDRAF was left with no options to present their case in a better way, Government was deaf and dumb and resorted to imprisonment as method of negotiation or hearing the peoples cries?

    Academic staff should stay out of politics unless their position is threatened and are forced to be political. No wonder our University rankings are getting worse as academic staff are not focusssed in work but in playing politics instead.

    Civil servants should also be apolitical so that the rakyat can expect best service no matter who the Government is.

  2. 2 dato 5 October 2008 at 11:36 pm

    “Kumpulan itu memperjuangkan isu-isu politik berlandaskan satu agama dan satu kaum,” jelasnya, sambil menambah matlamat tersebut berbahaya kepada hubungan kaum di negara ini.

    Prof. Dr. Mohamed Mustafa Ishak actually referred to UMNO. kah..kah…kah

  3. 3 concerned citizen 6 October 2008 at 1:05 am

    Hindraf started off as a group to voice out the grievances of the Indian community in Malaysia. Peace was their ulterior motive but the agony was the response of the authorities towards them, which made them act in a manner that could be considered ‘aggressive’. Thus many were charged in court and subsequently 5 being detained under the ISA. The government is to be blamed for their actions which resulted in the Indian community as a whole voting for the opposition in the last general election. UMNO needs growing up… Give a thought and you will realise why this movement, which is not political, is being given such a kind of recognition at the moment. Sit down with them and make an amicable decision which will bring peace among their members and the country as a whole without blowing it out of proportion.

  4. 4 Paul Warren 6 October 2008 at 6:03 am

    Was Universiti Utara Malaysia (UUM), Prof. Dr. Mohamed Mustafa Ishak present at the PWTC to see for himself if indeed there was a commotion?

    If there had to be negotiations to get into this open house how did that come about? I did not realise you had to negotiate to get in.

    If the HINDRAF supporters stood out as a sore thumb, is it also not true that we have previously seen MCA members, MIC women, PPP supporters uniformly dressed for these occassions?

    Has HINDRAF been previously provided any other avenue for HINDRAF to present itself and its case in a peaceful manner?

    Have Utusan, The Star and other MSM been ordered to categorise HINDRAF’s presence at the PWTC as hostile and unruly and to report as such?

    Home Minister Syed Hamid Albar had already warned Hindraf against acts that could be considered overtly ‘provocative’. Now how is anyone to know if what they did was provocative or not? May I suggest that The Home Minister NEVER EVER visit New Zealand. The Maori’s greeting is more than just simple provocative. The Mat Rempits are far more provocative and he is blind to it. Utusan Malaysia and Ahmad Ismail appear to be far more provocative and inciting and yet he is so blind and deaf … to it.

  5. 5 terry 6 October 2008 at 9:31 am

    the stupid statements made by BN really make me sick.

  6. 6 BadEgg 6 October 2008 at 10:13 am

    Well…what can you say. After 50 years I guess they had gone the deep end or what I prefer to call “senile”.

  7. 7 lakshmi 6 October 2008 at 11:11 am

    I had watched TV7 news that night and I did not see any provocation or rude behaviour on the part of HINDRAF. All I saw was an orderly crowd of HINDRAF supporters along with other RPK supporters and the general crowd queing up to greet Badawi. Actions had spoken louder than words. I also read Haris Ibrahim’s account (he was there as an RPK supporter) and no untoward incident was recorded. So what is Utusan Malaysia and the rest of the morons talking about? Suhakam should conduct an enquiry with all the reporters who were present and the photos and videos available. If it is proven that there was no commotion and provocation at PWTC on that day, then Utusan Malaysia and the morons owe HINDRAF an apology.

  8. 8 lakshmi 6 October 2008 at 11:16 am

    HINDRAF is a voice for all those countless Indians who have been marginalised by BN. Remember ASAL, the indigenous group who were not allowed to meet with the King? They are the only indigenous group in Malaysia, the rest of us are immigrants, some came earlier than the others, that all, and their rights are being denied. At least in Australia, the govt has apologised to the aborgines and have taken special action to assist them to assimilate into mainstream Australian society.

  9. 9 sinewy 6 October 2008 at 11:39 am

    It really baffles me why the Hindraf’s Raya visit at the PWTC will be provoking anger within the Muslim community as claimed by an UMNO politician. As a citizen of this country, I really want to know how many of the more than 10 million fellow Muslim citizens will get angry and believe that the Hindraf’s Raya visit at the PWTC will generate unrest among the majority of them. Does the rural Muslim population understand the Hindraf issues? Will the fair minded urban Muslim population share the sentiment of the UMNO politician? As a fellow citizen of this beloved country, I really want to know.

  10. 10 Samuel Goh Kim Eng 6 October 2008 at 12:55 pm

    There can never genuinely be an ‘Open House’
    Without guests being received with ‘Open Hearts’
    What’s worse will be to react with ‘Closed Minds’
    And to receive any token gift with a ‘Cold Heart’

    (C) Samuel Goh Kim Eng – 061008
    Mon. 6th Oct. 2008.

  11. 11 truemalaysian 9 October 2008 at 11:41 pm

    There has been much talk of the heroism of the Hindraf 5 and people especially from the indian community pratically worships them as the liberators. But those who have put on the thinking cap, will realise that Hindraf has made a fool of everyone especially the poor. One has only to read the memorandum to the Queen and also the 18-point demands as well as the allegations of genocide and ethnic cleasing to realise how we have been taken for a ride by the H5 supremos.

    All of my Indian friends from childhood days are very much better off from our father’s and grandfather’s time. They have good jobs and their standard of living have improved from their childhood days. The only ones who are affected were those ignored by the Indian community itself. There are the indian in the estates who were exploited by Indians managing the estates. Then there are the poor indians whose families are torn apart by the drunken head of the house and the surrounding which is not conducive. There are many more examples which i can quote that actually brought the downfall of indian community. These are the same problems faced by the malay community and that is why there are many poor malay families despite them being a priviledged lot.

    Let us ask ourselves sincerely, is not Hindraf a tinderbox?? Their views are extremely extremist and their actions are very erratic and irresponsible. If the government were to free the H5, then it would be simply granting them victory to do more damages to the country and very particulary to the indian society.
    The goverment did the right thing in arresting the H5 and therefore prevented the country from being engulfed in a damaging situation.

    The DPM has apologised on behalf of the PM to the indian community, Hishamuddin has apologised for waving the keris but when are the leaders of Hindraf going to apologise for tarnishing the image of the country.

    Why till to-date, there is not even one opposition party leaders who is brave enough to question the Hindraf leaders?

    What are they fighting for?? Is their struggle really for the poor poor indians? How will their 18 point demands improve the lot of poor indians? What is their definition of poor indians? How are they going to change the mindset of the indians if they keep blaming the govt for the problems faced by indians?
    What is their vision and mission?
    Have they forgotten that there are many more poor malays than indians as well as poor chinese too in this country??

    Maybe perhaps if Hindraf is ready to apologise for their actions and ready to work with other parties e.g MIC, PPP, etc etc for the betterment of the indian community, then we can confidently call for their release from the ISA detention.

    At the end of day, we should see and know the elements that is trying to destroy the peace and unity of this country and pro-actively reject the so-called elements that can destroy 50 years of nation building in a single day.

    All i ask is that the society be informed of the true nature of Hindraf. Just as we criticise the government for their failings and shortcomings, let us also be fair to all sides and fairly investigate the claims of Hindraf in the so-called documents and memorandum it issued in december 2007. Let us not be freed from the chains of the ruling elitist only to be held hostage by the so-called “struggles” of Hindraf.

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