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Monthly Archives: January 2009

http://www.malaysiakini.com/news/97342

I read Malaysiakini and understood the low-cost terminal (LCCT) supposed to be built in Labu Negeri Sembilan, had Najib proclaimed this project is cancelled. Somebody tells me the earth works for this project is already on. This was before Najib’s statement. I cringed and said well that is how we do business in this country. I read Mahathir’s blog, and others who questioned the need for 4 airports catering for Kuala Lumpur. But then reading that Najib had decided not to go ahead with it, I was satisfied that our Deputy Prime Minister is not one to follow the sheep but has got his own authority. But I see Transport Minister Ong Tee Keat’s claim today and realise Ong does not contribute to Nazib’s decision.

Is Najib going to sack Ong. Let’s wait and see. Who is the boss now?

A summary of what happened:

Lim was referring to Transport Minister Ong Tee Keat’s claim on Dec 19 that Cabinet had approved the construction of the new airport, only to have Deputy Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak claiming otherwise on Jan 23.

“Now we are confused. Who is actually in charge? Is the transport minister in charge of transport? We hope that when we deal with the transport minister, he would have power of authority,” he said.

On Dec 20, Ong reportedly said that Cabinet had given the nod for the new RM1.6 billion airport spanning 2,800-hectares, dubbed KLIA@East, and that it would be privately financed by Sime Darby Bhd and budget airline AirAsia.

Ong was reported to have said that the new airport was necessary as the current LCCT in Sepang was unable to cope with the increased volume of passengers.

More than a month later, Najib in a sudden turn of events said that the government had not decided on the matter. Yesterday, the project appeared to have been shelved indefinitely.

Malaysiakini reports President MIC Samy Vellu, has invited Indian Progressive Front to merge with his party. IPF members will be treated like brothers he says.

Is Samy mellowing down; the man to stand against him Muthupalaniappan, who was sacked, was reinstated, K.P.Samy an expelled Central Working Committee member, once sacked was readmitted to MIC, and now the avowed enemy of MIC, Pandithan’s party IPF gets a reprieve. 

Samy is not a spring chicken, he is 72 years old and has his age anything to do with his mellowing to allow sacked members and a party to come back. I don’t know. But being in the political arena for over 29 years as the chief, he feels reluctant to let go. All these plethora of goodness cannot go unnoticed.

If he feels changes are necessary, he should go first; he has not indicated any final date for his exit, keeping everyone guessing. Ask any Indian and the inevitable reply is Samy is too long in the MIC for the party to be effective and only a change can revitalise MIC.

This sentiment is also echoed by most of the members in MIC but the leaders in the CWC are spine less to do anything as this would mean the end of their political career. Samy has become a Dictator and God help anybody going against him.   

There was talk he was grooming Sothinathan over G.Palanivel but lately this issue is kept in abeyance.

Whatever it may be, I hope the new changes are not Samy’s fight to remain as President for life but a genuine remorse his leading of the party is not politically correct. Go and let somebody lead.

One interesting point here, Samy says there are about 1.8 million Indians in the country. MIC has 604,162 members, IPF insists it has got 250,000 members, and the other Indian based party PPP has 500,000 members making a rough total of 1.3 million Indians carrying party cards. I have friends and surprisingly none of them claim to be a member of any of MIC/IPF/PPP members.

These so called leaders of the Indian community, are making fools of the community, and what is hurting is that they have been doing this for a long time.

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Malaysiakini in its report of today gave this unexpected news coming from the Central Working Committee of MIC viz: Muthupalaniappan was reinstated as party member with a stern warning. The CWC revised the earlier decision to expel the man. What was noteworthy was Samy Vellu, excused himself from the meeting when Muthu’s case was deliberated.

My first thought was Samy Vellu had in a way re-branded the Indian party and here was proof dissent by members is excepted – all the while Muthu has bad mouthed Samy. But going by past records of MIC and how the President had dealt with any contender for the top post, I am skeptical. Remember, Subramaniam, M.G.Pandithan, Govindaraju and a host of other party leaders who showed opposition to Samy. 

The problem with MIC is, all the party leaders including those in the hierarchy of power owe their position to Samy; without his support they would not be there. Therefore, going against Samy in any form is tantamount to political suicide. Subramaniam learnt it the hard way, today he is in limbo.

Come to thing about it, all members within MIC can pin-point the weakness of the party very exactly. there are no doubts about it. Samy is the villain and he should go. But where is the hero to come from, definitely not from Seremban in Negri Sembilan and Muthu does not have the caliber. He could have been a very good Vice President and that ends there.

This could have been the reason why Samy is so generous with Muthu – it must not be forgotten all the CWC members are beholden to their President, and without doubt the members are just putting into action the thoughts of the supremo.

Some say Samy will bring the death of MIC as he has no inclination to allow the party to be led by others as long as he is around. Selfish thought it is, but then Samy thinks he is MIC and if that party perishes, he has proven his oft repeated thought that without me there is no MIC.   

Can we expect any dramatic changes come May this year when the President will be voted for. Will Samy have a change in heart.

R.V.David

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Hats off to our new defender of the Indian Community, one KK Eswaran (wonder why it is not Kenneth Eswaran, fear perhaps of implications), who is Malaysian Association of Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MAICCI) president. To my mind, this guy has no right whatsoever to comment on the plight of the Indians, as by an earlier admission, that came in Malaysiakini, he toasted the Indians by claiming:

  1. his total failure to see the relevance of what P Waythamoorthy and Denison Jayasooria have done so far
  2. how it is hearsay to say Government does not help Indians, quoting his case of getting help for the scrap dealers through the help of Najib – applause and much sounds of joy – though those in the know of Ji, would have not been perturbed.
  3. Indians can’t be spoon-fed, they must embark on their own
  4. the Hindraf rally in November 2007 was not necessary. 

Here was this gentleman telling everybody who listened, come on guys, what you are doing is wrong, speak to the Government, do not demonstrate or take to the streets. KK must have been on a long holiday, and missed the fact that Hindraf and Bersih rallies culminated in a strong opposition to the ruling Barisan Nasional.

He was torn into smithereens by fellow bloggers who questioned his real intention were.

But now, perhaps to assuage his self confidence and to be in the right side of the fence, talks in support of the dead Kugan, his family, Hamid Albar, for his inappropriate comment on taking action against the Deputy Ministers, and a final plea justice must be done.

Do we need fellows of this chameleon character to voice their comments, now that Samy is hibernating.

I have reproduced both of KK’s 2 statements, to know the real picture.   

R.V.David  

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KK Eswaran, Malaysian Association of Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MAICCI) president
a kugan detention death funeral ummc to puchong 280109 20I think the first thing to do is to think about the family of the boy who died (Kugan). Home Minister Syed Hamid Albar must make sure that the matter is properly investigated and he must take action.
The credibility of the police who are there to protect the public is at stake. Taking the statements of the deputy ministers (who entered the morgue at Serdang Hospital) should not be the priority of the Home Minister. It is uncalled for.
Instead those responsible for the death of Kugan must be brought to justice. Anyone who has a child wants to know how did it happen? Kugan’s family have the right to know as soon as possible.

 

Indian business group’s chief slams gov’t critics

S Pathmawathy | Jan 23, 09 5:13pm

KK Eswaran, the president of the Indian-based business group, the Malaysian Associated Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Maicci), has lashed out at government critics for negative remarks on the country’s leadership.

The activities of banned movement Hindu Rights Action Force (Hindraf) leader P Waythamoorthy and Human Rights Commission (Suhakam) commissioner Denison Jayasooria, topped Eswaran’s grievances.
eswaran maicci 23_01_2009“We regret Waythamoorthy’s inconsiderate action in circulating a pamphlet tarnishing the image of his own country at a conference with seditious remarks and unjustified statistics, plus a call to the Indian government to impose trade sanctions against Malaysia such as to stop importing palm oil from Malaysia,” said Eswaran (photo).
Eswaran was referring to Waythamoorthy’s stint in India during thePravasi Bharatiya Divas Convention in Chennai, where the self-exiled Waythamoorthy had declared that Malaysian Indians are ill-treated and marginalised.
At a press conference in Petaling Jaya today, Eswaran blasted Waythamoorthy for being ungrateful “to the land he calls home and the land that he has made his living”.
“Firstly, he being a Malaysian who feels Malaysia is his home, (why) would he ever tarnish his home’s image in a world convention?”
“Why do we need the interference of a third party to solve our problems…after 52 years of independence and peace we have people like Waythamoorthy (ruining the name of the country),” said Eswaran.
A proper way in approaching gov’t
“What he is talking about is not relevant and there is no truth to any of his stories,” he exclaimed.
Furthermore, the businessman reiterated that the issues of minority and majority is not an issue in Malaysia alone (but) an issue in almost all the democratic countries.
Asked about the perception of the Indian community on the matter of marginalisation and their doubts on the BN-led government, Eswaran said: “There is a proper way in approaching the government…and it is not by demonstration and taking to the streets”.
Eswaran stressed that the Maicci had many successful encounters with government and accomplished many feats via dialogue sessions and meetings.
“For instance, when we approached the deputy prime minister to sort the scrap-metal licensing  problem…he promised he will take the issue to the cabinet and it was solved not long after,” said Eswaran.
hindraf british petition rally 251107He added that Hindraf’s
street protest in 2007 which saw a crowd of some 30,000 people in the streets of Kuala Lumpur, was “in the interest of an individual, not the community”.
Eswaran also criticised Suhakam commissioner Jayasooria for claiming that government efforts to uplift the Indians were delayed and for asking the Indian government, during the convention, to send a task force to survey the situation of local Indians.
denison jayasooriaHe said statements by Jayasooria, who was once the former executive director of Social Strategic Foundation (YSS), a foundation established by the MIC to eradicate the social ills and problems related to the Indian community, was “certainly not encouraged or be supported substantially”.
Chinese cannot be PKNS general manager

“While he was the executive director of YSS, he repeatedly mentioned that the government, MIC and YSS are working towards the development of the Indians. But presently, he is no longer in YSS, he has changed his tune altogether,” said Eswaran.
eswaran maicci 2  23_01_2009He explained that government efforts to increase and prosper the participation of the Malaysian Indians is an “on-going” process.
“Proposing foreign representatives to undertake a fact-finding mission to Malaysia is certainly irrational from a person who is sitting in various government missions and Malaysia does not need the interference from other countries,”
“How has the community benefited from all of that…how many problems have been solved ever since?” he asked.
Eswaran also stressed that he was speaking in the interest of the Indian community and in his capacity as an Indian businessman.
Moreover, he said that the public have got to stop thinking that the government should “spoon-feed” them with opportunities and embark on their own efforts to improve their wealth.
low siew moi and pkns selangor“Is the opposition as multi-racial as they promised…look at what happened in Selangor,” said Eswaran referring to the replacement of Low as the
acting general manager of Selangor Development Corporation (PKNS).
Beginning Feb 1, Low’s position would be taken over by Othman Omar following controversies on the grounds that she is Chinese.
“The BN government is the only government that can lead this multi-racial country … although we must have an opposition, it must be an opposition that is genuine to the people,” he said.

The Malaysian Insider reports there were differences in the two autopsies done on Kugan. The second post mortem results, as it would appear is no where close to “water in the lungs”.

Let us wait for further results then.

R.V.David

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PUCHONG, Jan 28 — Initial results of the second autopsy on Kugan Ananthan, who died mysteriously in police custody on Jan 20, is contrary to the one undertaken by government pathologists, and goes beyond “water in the lungs” as the cause of death, Kapar MP S. Manickavasagam said today.

“Kugan’s family and lawyers already know the results of the post-mortem but have been urged by the forensic pathologist, who carried out post mortem, not to disclose it until his report is completed,” Manickavasagam said today after attending Kugan’s funeral.

He disclosed that tissue samples taken by the pathologist attached to the University Malaya Medical Centre (UMMC) will be sent to Singapore for analysis. The first autopsy was done in the Serdang Hospital.

The politician said contrary to press reports, Kugan’s family had asked for the second post-mortem to be done and the cost was paid by Puchong MP Gobind Singh Deo.

“Therefore the results will be given to the family and lawyers first and not the government as reported,” he added

Meanwhile, Manikavasagam said he will lodge a police report against Datuk Khalid Abu Bakar at  the Brickfields police station tomorrow, claiming the Selangor police chief had lied about a mob barging into the Serdang Hospital mortuary and tampered with Kugan’s remains.

“I have an hour long recording that will show that there was no mob, only grieving family and friends who were let in by an attendant, at the mortuary,” he added.

Meanwhile several Pakatan Rakyat politicians and lawyers lashed out at police for their excessive force while the family members went to claim his body for the UMMC mortuary and extensive police presence during the entire funeral.

Lawyer N.Surendren said family members initially had to “negotiate with police” to let them through a police cordon at UMMC to claim the body.

“This was totally unnecessary as they knew we were coming to claim the body for the funeral, today.”

Subang MP Sivarasa Rasiah said there was an excessive police presence at every stage of the funeral.

“Why was there a need for such a big police presence when all we wanted to do was claim the body and have the funeral.” he asked.

Meanwhile Penang deputy Chief Minister and Perai state assemblyman Dr P Ramasamy, who was also at the funeral, urged the government to implement the proposed Independent Police Complaints and Misconduct Commission (IPMC) without further delay.

“Let Kugan be the last death in custody and not wait for another case.” he said.

Kugan Anandan was laid to rest today at about 5.30 PM after a long procession of about 20 kilometres. May his soul rest in peace. There were 5 arrests, 3 for wearing Hindraf T-shirts and the other 2 for trying to enter the hospital mortuary. There were all in about 500 people following the funeral procession.

The results of the second post-mortem report is not out yet, and it is hoped the Police will take action for the immediate release of the second and well as to take action if it is called for. This will be the best reciprocal action they could do in the remembrance of Kugan, as the Attorney-General Tan Sri Abdul Gani Patail has himself asked the police to classify the death of A. Kugan as murder for investigation purposes.

If the Police are going to drag their feet, in concluding and taking positive action, and I daresay this will happen, it is up to us to write continually to keep the the issue relevant without being forgotten as another case of death under Police custody.

Kugan has become an unfortunate victim manhandled by the Police; the visuals were very clear, and let us hope this 22 year old’s case becomes instrumental in stopping Police brutality.  

Malaysiakini

R.V.David

This is the latest from the Malaysian Insider.

 

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 27 – A second autopsy on suspected car thief Kugan Ananthan has found external injuries caused by blunt force trauma, sources told The Malaysian Insider.

The 22-year-old, who died while in police custody on Jan 20, was said to have died of cardiac arrest following the injuries, the sources said.

Initial findings also revealed Kugan was asthmatic, and his condition had caused phlegm to accumulate in his lungs.

The full report is expected to be issued within days after Universiti Malaya Medical Centre pathologists carried out the autopsy that lasted nearly 10 hours on Sunday following a dispute over earlier findings that he had died of “water in the lungs”.

The Attorney-General’s Chambers have classified the case as murder and 11 policemen from the Subang USJ Taipan police station have been reassigned to desk duty pending investigations.

It is understood that closed-circuit-television-cameras (CCTV) were not placed in the police station’s lock-up despite a directive years ago that was intended to prevent claims of police abuse.

Kugan was said to be part of a syndicate involved in stealing luxury cars but his family said he has no criminal record and worked as an insurance claims executive.

Kugan will be cremated at the Puchong Batu 14 crematorium on Wednesday.

Fearing trouble, police have warned his family and friends not to turn the funeral into a protest following unconfirmed reports that a procession with banners and placards are being planned.

The police are now questioning some 21 people, including two deputy ministers, for allegedly barging into a hospital mortuary to view Kugan’s body last week. The family and the two politicians dispute the police and hospital version of events, saying they had a right to see the body.

His death is the latest over the years of suspects, mainly Indians, who had died suddenly in police custody.

Political parties across the divide have asked for an independent probe into his death and others in the past.

His family has also criticised the police for hiding behind a wall of silence over the death.

“The police never informed us that he was arrested and we only heard about it from an anonymous caller,” Kugan’s uncle V. Raviroy told The Malaysian Insider.

The 42-year-old businessman said no matter what Kugan was accused of doing; he did not deserve to die.

“Kugan was only 22, he had his whole life ahead of him, why did he end up dead in the lockup?” he lamented.

The fact that external injuries caused by blunt force trauma, had been found is a clear indication the first post mortem done was a fiasco. Where were the CCTVs? Perhaps the Home Minister can comment!

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 27 – Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi has described Bota assemblyman Datuk Nasarudin Hashim’s decision to join Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) as “not surprising”.

“I am not surprised … but he might have his own reasons (to defect) and we should know the reasons,” he said yesterday.

Ahmad Zahid who was met by reporters after the closing of the Islamic Economic Development Festival 2009 (I-Fest 09) here, said the Barisan Nasional needed to look not only into Nasarudin’s reasons for making the decision, but also that of other assemblymen and MPs who intended to do the same, especially in the opposition-ruled states.

“Perhaps the problem is about allocations, where we (federal government) can help. Maybe they find it difficult to fund activities, which they often do as the people’s representatives.

“So, assistance should be extended to them so that personal pressure does not become political pressure for these elected representatives,” added Ahmad Zahid, who is an Umno Supreme Council member.

Yesterday, Nasarudin announced his decision to join Parti Keadilan Rakyat which he said was made after due consideration. – Bernama

So it is confirmed. Bota assemblyman, Datuk Nasarudin switched his allegiance to PKR in Perak due to not receiving enough pocket money. Another windfall awaits all Barisan representatives in government. The nagging question is what if they receive the extra money and still cross over to the opposition? 

Malaysiakini reports that the second post mortem on the late Kugan will be completed and submitted to the Attorney General by Wednesday. I suppose this is normal and procedures are being followed. The public wants to know the outcome of the investigations, and many are aghast seeing visuals of the dead person. But, what surprises me is the request by the Selangor Police Chief Khalid Abu Bakar , requesting the public not to speculate on the second post-mortem conducted. As much as he wants to assuage the public everything is above board, I can’t imagine what would have happened if a a Police detainee, elsewhere, had undergone the same predicament as Kugan, if the family and some Deputy Ministers who as allegedly barged into the morgue had not done so. How many would know Kugan had external injuries. Sometimes I wonder if every citizen who dies in Police custody will have a second recourse to put matters at rest. Even in Kugan’s case asthma was bandied about as one of the reasons of his death.

I appreciate Khalid’s inquiry into witnesses to put matters right. Hoping against hope, he should investigate, first, the Doctor who did the post mortem, without taking into account the external injuries. This poor Doctor has not shown much creditability, and I am sure Khalid will look into this.

Coming to the question of the speculation, as Khalid says, people should not, people will comment and have opinions and this Kugan’s case happens to be so clear cut, he had been tortured. So, Khalid should be clear that the people would and should speculate until some Police personnel, and not some lowly corporals are blamed: don’t tell me their superiors no nothing – Inspectors, Chief Inspectors the lot, including himself.

Well anyway, Khalid you are the one gossiping, you are telling the people not to do, but then the ball is at your court. Think about it.      

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It is a pity this first time Parliamentarian would be not available in the august house to raise matters concerning the Government that rules the country. In addition, 80,000 people from Puchong will have no representative to represent the people.

Much has been talked about the Speaker from Perak who suspended Barisan Nasional members for usurping the democratic rights of the people. This Puchong representative bears the brunt of the reciprocal action by the ruling party.

Parliament was one place where issues were discussed without fear of litigation, and speakers had the confidence to air views and observations, to be discussed. But from now on, one must tread carefully, if the Speaker Pandikar Amin Mulia, so decides, that particular speaker will be without a job and income.

Parliament is losing its importance; Karpal Singh was intimated by UMNO youths and now this long suspension. it is losing it venerable position.

What next? 

‘I wasn’t given chance to defend myself’

‘I wasn’t given chance to defend myself’
S Pathmawathy | Mar 16, 09 4:33pm

Puchong DAP parliamentarian Gobind Singh Deo, who has been slapped with a rare 12-month suspension from today, expressed disbelief over the decision.
MCPX

“I cannot except the decision of the House to suspend me for 12 months without hearing me out first,” he said at a press conference in the lobby.

najib tun razak 040808Gobind was booted out for implicating Deputy Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak (right) in the murder of Mongolian national Altantuya Shaariibuu, during the debate on committee stage of the second stimulus package last week.

“I only wish to say this, I did not make accusations against the MP of Pekan (Najib) behind his back. He was in Parliament and I only asked him to explain. That is all I did,” said Gobind in his defence.

gobind suspended from parliament 160309 02“Many allegations were made against me and the motion was moved against me to suspend me for 12 months but when I stood up to respond in my defence, I was shot down.”

Gobind, who appeared shocked by the decision, also said he was disappointed with the conduct of the House.

“As a MP it is my duty to ask questions in the House and I was only carrying out my duty… if we have questions to clarify, we ask for clarification in the Dewan.

“It is most unfortunate, but the fight does not stop here… I will concentrate more on constituency work for now and in one year I will be back.”

‘Kangaroo court’

Opposition parliamentarians who had staged a walkout against the decision were also present at the press conference.

Opposition Leader and Permatang Pauh MP Anwar Ibrahim said the speaker should have allowed the appeal for the matter to be referred to a select committee.

gobind suspended from parliament 160309 03“It is disgusting because they don’t respect the principles of natural justice… this is not how a Parliament should convene,” noted Anwar.

“(A select committee) is an acknowledgment that a serious allegation against a deputy prime minister must be fully investigated… but this was rejected summarily by the House and a proper debate was also rejected. How do you then proceed to condemn a person without even giving him the opportunity to speak?

“The way that Umno and BN controlled the House in treating the MP (this way) is disgusting. We had no option but to walk out against the manner in which the House conducts (its business), without respect for the spirit of the constitution and the rules.”

DAP Ipoh Timor MP Lim Kit Siang said that, although Parliament is generally convened as a court of justice, the session this morning was more like a kangaroo court in operation.

“This is an offence against all notions of justice,” said Lim.

kamaruddin jaafar kamaruddin jaffarTumpat PAS MP Kamaruddin Jaafar expressed bewilderment with the speaker’s decision to allow the debate.

“The motion was debated because it was approved by the speaker on the grounds that this is in national interest but we had only 20 minutes to have settle everything… what national interest is there?” he asked.

karpal singh 00Bukit Gelugor MP and DAP national chairperson Karpal Singh pointed out: “It has been rightly said that the speaker is ‘no man’s man’… he is the speaker of the House.

“But I regret that he has stood to the extent of not even allowing the Puchong MP to defend himself. The (decision) cannot be accepted by any right thinking person… I cannot go beyond that.”

Gobind, a lawyer, is Karpal’s son and a first-term parliamentarian. His brother Ram Karpal and mother were also present in Parliament today.

Last June, he was suspended for two days for disobeying speaker Pandikar Amin Mulia’s orders during a heated 10-minute argument.