Malaysian Hindus rally and the govt asks Media to self censor on Ethnic Indian crackdown

6 12 2007


Agitating Indians have LTTE links: Malaysia
From Rediff
Jaishree Balasubramanian in Kuala Lumpur

December 07, 2007 19:10 IST
In a new twist to the ongoing spat between Malaysian authorities and agitating ethnic Indians, the government has accused protesters of seeking help from “terrorists and local gangsters” including the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, a charge the campaigners said was an attempt to put them in jail under an archaic internal security law.
Malaysia’s Inspector-General of Police Musa Hassan said recent investigations have revealed that the campaign group, Hindu Rights Action Force (Hindraf), “has been actively canvassing for support and assistance from terrorist groups”.
The links were discovered following intense police investigations in the past six months into Hindraf’s activities, reports said.

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Repression of Malaysian Hindus unacceptable: Anwar Ibrahim
From The Hindu

Mumbai (PTI): Anwar Ibrahim, former Deputy Prime Minister of Malaysia, on Saturday condemned Kuala Lumpur’s crackdown on protests by ethnic Hindu citizens last week describing it as “unacceptable”.
Talking to the media at the Islamic Peace Conference here, Ibrahim also defended reactions in India, saying that “every country has a right to express its views diplomatically.”
“In this age, you can’t say that any repression should not be condemned because its country’s internal affair…to say `lay off’ does not work…,” Ibrahim said while referring to the remarks by Malaysian Minister Nazri Aziz against Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Karunanidhi who had raised concerns over the “marginalisation” of ethnic Indians in that country.
“Malaysia supports Palestinians…what if Israelis says `lay off’?” he asked.

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Malaysian PM hits back
12/2/2007 8:48:46 PM

Malaysia hits back, tells India not to interfere
Malaysia has told India not to meddle in its internal affairs after New Delhi expressed concerns over the treatment of ethnic Indians in Muslim-majority Malaysia. Foreign Minister Syed Hamid Albar said the government would deal with citizens according to its own laws and no other country should interfere.

On November 30, more than 10,000 Malaysian Indians staged the community’s biggest anti-government protest, sparked by anger over policies they say prevent them from getting decent jobs or a good education for their children. Police used tear gas and water canons to disperse the protesters, many of them Tamils with their roots in the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu, sparking outrage and demands from Tamil politicians that New Delhi intervene.

“If they break any law, it is our right to deal with them in accordance with Malaysian laws,” Syed Hamid was quoted as saying. India said that it was concerned about the treatment of ethnic Indians in Malaysia and had taken up with Kuala Lumpur accusations that protesters from the community had been harassed. “The government remains deeply solicitous for the welfare of people of Indian origin living abroad,” Indian Foreign Minister Pranab Mukherjee told the Parliament.

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Malaysian opposition seeks task force on ethnic Indians’ problems

Submitted by Mudassir Rizwan on Thu, 12/06/2007 – 06:47.

Kuala Lumpur : Malaysia’s parliamentary opposition has urged Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmed Badawi to head a task force to study problems facing ethnic Indians, citing a fall in the number of government jobs they hold.

The demand came on Wednesday even as a lawmaker belonging to the Barisan Nasional, the ruling coalition, disapproved of use of force by the police against a rally of Tamils on November 25.
Opposition Leader Lim Kit Siang, who represents Ipoh Timur in parliament, told the media in the parliament lobby that the cabinet should set up a special task force headed by the Prime Minister to resolve the problems faced by the Indians, The Star newspaper said.
“The cabinet should come out with a new policy for a new deal to end this,” he said.
“The number of Indians in the civil service has also plunged in the past 34 years, from 17.4 percent in 1971 to 5.12 percent in 2005,” he added.

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Malaysia’s ‘Tectonic Shift’
By Rose Ismail

From the Wall street journal

It’s rally season in Kuala Lumpur. Last month, around 40,000 opposition parties, trade unions and non-governmental organizations braved thunderstorms and roadblocks to demand clean and fair elections. Two weeks ago, the Hindu Rights Action Force (Hindraf) demonstrated, demanding fair treatment for Malaysian Indians. A fracas broke out and some 200 people were arrested.
These rallies are clearly not for the faint-hearted, as each one has been preceded by stern statements from the government, which included warnings about invoking the Internal Security Act. But they have a deeper import, beyond the threat of jail: These protests indicate a tectonic shift in …….. For a complete article subscribe here


Malaysian Hindus protest genocide, temple demolitionHindu civil disobedience movement launched

“Malaysian Indians have never gathered in such large numbers in this way…,” said organiser P. Uthaya Kumar of the Hindu Rights Action Force (Hindraf). “They are frustrated and have no job opportunities in the government or the private sector. They are not given business licences or places in university,” he said, adding that Indians were also incensed by some recent demolitions of Hindu temples.

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Malaysian media told to self-censor reports on ethnic Indian crackdown

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia: Malaysia’s government has told the mainstream media not to sensationalize a crackdown on ethnic Indians following an unprecedented rally against racial discrimination in Muslim-majority Malaysia, officials said.
Che Din Yusoh, a senior official with the Internal Security Ministry, said newspaper editors had been given “verbal advice” not to highlight sensitive issues related to the Nov. 25 rally by at least 20,000 ethnic Indians that police broke up by force.

“Don’t sensationalize what police are doing. Don’t give a very negative picture … We have guidelines on publication, and they have to implement (self) censorship,” he told The Associated Press late Wednesday.

Malaysiakini, an independent Internet news portal, reported Wednesday that top editors of all dailies were summoned by the government for a meeting, and were told not to give prominence to Hindu Rights Action Force, or Hindraf, the group that is leading the Indian unrest.
An editor of a Tamil-language daily, catering to Indians, confirmed the meeting took place Tuesday. He told the AP that the government advised all chief editors to be “very careful” about “sharp wordings,” especially in headlines. He spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the issue.

From the International Herald Tribune for a complete article please click here