Image: Malaysian Insider, cops grill HINDRAF members over their Hari Raya ‘adventure’ at the PM’s open house’.
The article below was circulated in the email by Sambulingam Wisvalingam, Hindraf National Coordination Team, today.
Two similar occasions, one was the PWTC Open House hosted by our PM, the other Hari Raya Open House hosted by Dato Seri Anwar Ibrahim and yet how different the treatment…
The very same 6years old Vwaishnavi, daughter of Hindraf chairman P.Waythamoorthy with the almost similar home made, Hari Raya greeting card carrying the same message accompanied by a teddy bear.
The same Hindraf supporters of approximately 200 members, in their now familiar, orange Tee shirts.
The very same occasion of Hari Raya open house but only this time hosted by the opposition leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim at Kampung Baru, Kuala Lumpur on 12th October 2008.
As the supporters began to gather outside Sultan Sulaiman Club, our Muslim brothers who were passing by smiled and waved at us. In return Hindraf supporters wished them “Selamat Hari Raya ‘bang.
Police officers on duty too were greeted Selamat Hari Raya by the Hindraf supporters, some of them wished us back while some just smiled and waved.
What a contrast from the reception we got from the policemen on duty at PWTC? Were these officers the same ones who stopped and bullied us at PWTC? On whose orders?
Similar to our attendance at PWTC on the 1st of October 2008, Vwaishnnavi and her mother Mrs.Shanti took the lead into the club together with the Kapar MP YB Manikavasagam.
The moment we stepped into the compound YB Zuraida Kamaruddin, the Ampang MP welcomed us .
There was an announcement made to mark our presence and thousands of our Malaysian Muslim brothers cheered, clapped and welcomed us into the hall.
Among the MPs who welcomed us were YB Tian Chua , YB Sivarasah ,YB Nurul Izzah and I might have missed some of the other hospitable YB’s. Minta Maaf.
YB Anwar Ibrahim and Datin Wan Azizah who came in after prayers welcomed the hundreds of the Hindraf supporters with a welcoming smile .
They shook hands with each and every one of us. We greeted them “Selamat Hari Raya, Release all ISA detainees and Abolish ISA”.
Datuk Seri confidently said “sure I will” to me and I believe to the rest as well.
To digress a bit, no body says “Makkal Shakti” with so much conviction, encouragement and yet these powerful words of “Peoples’Power” is expressed with gentleness by Kak Wan – truly a woman of substance!!
They accepted the same home made card and the teddy bear from little Vwaishnnavi.
Yet what a difference on how we were received by the two hosts and how it was reported by media, Hindraf had been demonized for attending the PWTC open house on 1st October 2008.
Frankly, we never anticipated the shameful way we were treated during the Hari Raya Open House hosted by none other than the PM of Malaysia and his cabinet ministers at PWTC.
Malaysians were fully aware of intentions of getting our Hindraf leaders out before Deepavali so that they may celebrate this auspicious occasion with their family.
We are also serious about getting our brother RPK and other ISA detainees released. All of which was turned, twisted , manipulated and propagated by the powers that be.
Hindraf was accused as “Biadap” , “Kurang Ajar” “Pengacau” and the most heart breaking “Insulting Islam and Muslims of this country”.
This was further compounded with 4 Hindraf supporters being summoned to the Dang Wangi Police station for merely attending the open house of the Prime Minister.
They were charged for illegal gathering?? and trespassing?? at PM’s Open House.
By the way, we even informed Senior Officers in Putra Jaya on 22nd Sept 2008, that Vwaishnnavi and some of us Hindraf supporters would be at the Open House, PM’s secretary assured us that we would be welcome at the open house.
Additionally, wasn’t the PM’s invitation to the open house extended to all Malaysians?
So then why PM Sir, were we consistently provoked ever since we stepped into PWTC premises? You yourself saw how the hand made Hari Raya card by six years old Vwaishnnavi was torn by your officials? This wasn’t a petition or a memo.
A simple self made Hari Raya Greeting card offered to you by a Malaysian Child was taken over by dozens of police officers who stormed in to confiscate and rip it apart, what an insult to the Indian children and the entire Malaysian community!!
Why then did you say we did not greet you? You and your advisors, the police insulted us Indians, every step of our way in the Open House.
Are we not correct to assume that the Hari Raya Open House was paid by us Malaysian Tax payers?
So then, why were we so badly treated at our own Malaysian open house? Mr PM, don’t you consider us Hindraf supporters as Malaysians?
Is it wrong for us to ask to release our Hindraf leaders, RPK and other ISA detainees, who are in prison, without giving us any valid reasons for their imprisonment?
So many Malaysians of all races concur with us that the draconian ISA law should be abolished, even members of UMNO voiced it out, so what’s so wrong about us voicing our democratic right at our own Malaysian Open House??
Then again, why didn’t Datuk Seri Anwar , Datin Wan Azizah , rest of the YBs and VIPs present at Sultan Sulaiman Club think that Hindraf as Biadap , Kurang Ajar , pengacau.
Our Malay brothers there never commented or felt that Hindraf had insulted theMuslim, by attending this open house in our orange colored Tee shirts with a simple home made Raya greeting card and a teddy bear??
By the way we still asked that ISA be abolished and detainees released, yet what a contrast in treatment we received at PWTC ?
The Main stream media especially the Malay newspapers under the government’s control has blamed and accused us for unruly behavior, labeled our women and children as trouble makers and said Hindraf supporters never respected Hari Raya.
The Almighty God knows the truth and you too should let all Malaysians know the truth, that we conducted ourselves with decorum, even though we were initially stopped and not allowed to meet you.
UMNO all with it’s propaganda had Hindraf demonized, some of the Ministers even wanted the society deregistered!! Do you think you can kill the spirit of Hindraf??
Sorry, we are not just a society, we are united in spirit, not just Indians, but every Anak Bangsa Malaysia, and this spirit can never die, it will continue until all are accorded due respect as Malaysian citizens.
One may ask why we chose the Hari Raya Open House, our answer is that PM had avoided all our calls to meet him in his office or elsewhere.
We had no other choice but to state our request at this open house, we wanted to look in the eyes of PM so that we could directly tell him to release our leaders, RPK and other detainees. That’s all. So cut out the condemnation and lies about our behaviour.
Many guests who were at the PWTC open house did not even know that we were present. Categorically we did not create any ruckus or commotion, full families came in support.
We are the ones who feel insulted that as our Prime Minister, you did not treat us Malaysian citizens with due respect of a courteous host, especially as one would expect from a person of your stature.
Finally, though I am not a scholar on religion, however, I can definitely say that what the Prime Minister, the Deputy Prime Minister, the Home Minister, the Information Minister, the Tourism Minister; Unity, Culture, Arts and Heritage Minister and rest of the Ministers have said against Hindraf on and after the 1st of October 2008 Hari Raya Open House at PWTC cannot be condoned for untruths, insincerity and lies are unacceptable by any religion!!
Was this an issue to merely garner more votes prior to UMNO General Election??