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Sunday, September 27, 2009

Makkal Sakthi Party 'a BN plant' - Malaysiakini

'The Malaysia Makkal Sakthi Party (MMSP) ... has hijacked the Hindraf battle cry 'Makkal Sakthi'. Imagine the confusion it may cause to the local Indian community every time 'Makkal Sakthi' is being shouted.'


Makkal Sakthi Party - Hindraf cries foul


Wira: The Malaysia Makkal Sakthi Party (MMSP), which increasingly is being viewed as a BN plant, has hijacked the Hindraf battle cry 'Makkal Sakthi'. Imagine the confusion it may cause to the local Indian community every time 'Makkal Sakthi' is being shouted.

I won't be surprised if the BN government would also install another party called Parti Reformasi Malaysia.

Arul Inthirarajah: It's clear to all that Najib Razak's ploy is to divide the Indians since BN cannot get their vote anyway. So, he wants to prevent Pakatan Rakyat from getting their vote. And there will always be some selfish opportunist who will gladly sell his fellow men away for personal gain.

To top it off, and to show his lack of originality and brains, he even stoops so low as to steal the Hindraf slogan for the name of his party, off the backs of people who had braved riot police and truncheons. Where was he during the cow-head incident? Having tea with Najib? We did not hear his voice then.

Mahindar Singh: Another race-based party. Please do not call this an Indian party. It is a Tamil-based party and brought in just to close up MIC. Now S Samy Vellu have no choice but to leave. Indians are make up of other groups apart from Tamil

Mathavan Velayutham: Hindraf is our spirit, whatever the Pakatan supporters or Barisan supporters say or do, will not dent our support for Hindraf's leadership. Brother P Waythamoorthy, we'll support you wherever you are.

We know that if not because of you, sure Hindraf will not be here today. They trying very hard to break us because they scared of true 'makkal sakthi'. Our 'makkal sakthi' is not just mere a name, but it's more than that.

Brij Jayaram Kathiravelu: Never mind MMSP. I think the Indians are smart enough to understand the political game, played by the BN goverment and make the rights choice when the time comes. But bro, Waythamoorthy please come back and lead the movement for whatever that you are fighting for. Enough of these statements from London, we miss you!


Samy sees short exit, no long goodbye


X'roy: S Samy Vellu's referral to the Mahathir Mohamad- Anwar Ibrahim crisis, especially his statement on how Anwar was removed, seems to me like an attempt by Samy to acknowledge that Anwar was framed and removed.

Coming from Samy, whom we all know was a devoted Mahathir disciple at that time, lends credence to the claim that all the allegations made out against Anwar were indeed a Mahathir conspiracy. That brings us to the latest Anwar saga and Najib, and that also sheds light into the extent Umno will go to silence any serious opposition against it.

Malayamuda:
Samy is not consistent. One moment he praises Mahathir, next moment he ridicules him. We all know Mahathir is a racist who only helped the Malays doing his reign, for that, the Malays forced him to resign post-1998, but Samy has to be consistent about Mahathir... is he the great statesman who did not do anything for other communities during his 22-year reign?

Kgen: The nature of race-based parties is that they make themselves redundant if the community they champion is uplifted. There would be no need for an MIC to fight for Indian rights or MCA for Chinese rights if all ethnic communities are at the same level of development.

Hence there is no sincere effect to bring their community to be on par with the mainstream. The race-based model is structurally flawed and must go. What we need are multi-racial parties which do not make themselves redundant if they do a good job.

KayKay: Mahathir keeps talking about Samy overstaying when he himself hung round for 22 long years although he didn't have any grassroots support in Umno. He was always returned unopposed. Why doesn't he mention the other overstayers who have been around even longer than Samy i.e. Taib Mahmud, Alfred Jabu and George Chan, all in Sarawak, and Joseph Pairin Kitingan in Sabah?

Not only has Taib Mahmud overstayed his welcome, he took over from his uncle who was also chief minister. All in the family. Taib probably plans to either hand over the chief minister's crown to his son who is in the federal cabinet, his brother who is in the state assembly or a cousin.

These days, politicians behave as if they are royalty. Political parties, the state assembly and the agencies of government are used as mere rubber stamps while they abuse power and exercise absolute power. Through the politics of patronage, they corrupt the entire system and in order to preserve the system, they make sure the honest are kept out.

Kugan group with petition turned away from Istana

(NST) KUALA LUMPUR: While Hindus will celebrate Deepavali in three weeks, there will be no joy in the festivities for the family of A. Kugan, the suspected car thief who died in police custody early this year.

Kugan's mother, N. Indra, 41, yesterday voiced her dissatisfaction at the police and the Attorney-General's Chambers, as justice is yet to be delivered eight months after his death.

"I want to know who killed my son. I want justice," a teary-eyed Indra said in Brick-fields yesterday.

She and about 20 others -- comprising relatives and several members of parliament -- had earlier been asked to disperse from Istana Negara, where they had gone to pass a petition seeking justice for Kugan's death.

Puchong member of parliament Gobind Singh Deo, who was present, said the group started gathering outside the Istana about 11am to pass the petition. He refused to reveal the contents of the petition, saying it had not been passed to the relevant party.

"It was a peaceful gathering and was done after a palace official gave the green light to receive our petition last week.

"But when we arrived there, the police allowed only three people from the crowd to head towards the gate to pass the petition, which we refused."

The group asked Brickfields police chief Assistant Commissioner Wan Abdul Wan Abdul Khalid, who was in charge of the situation, to allow five people to hand over the petition but instead they were asked to disperse.

The group dispersed about 35 minutes later without incident. They adjourned to Brickfields and held a press conference.

Gobind said he would raise the matter in Parliament. The group will plan another gathering soon to pass the petition to the Istana. "If Attorney-General Tan Sri Abdul Gani Patail is so incompetent that he can't get Kugan's killers and charge them, we request a Royal Commission of Inquiry be formed to handle the case."

Present were Kapar MP S. Manikavasagam, Kota Alam Shah assemblyman M. Mano-haran and Human Rights Party secretary-general P. Utha-yakumar.

Kugan, 22, was detained by police on Jan 15 for alleged car theft but died five days later while in police custody.

Umno leaning towards Isa for Bagan Pinang

By The Malaysian Insider

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 27 — On the main roads and thoroughfares just outside Port Dickson near here, banners backing Tan Sri Isa Samad are already lining the streets.

The banners are the clearest physical evidence that as far as Umno’s Teluk Kemang division is concerned, the only man they will consider as candidate for the Bagan Pinang division will be Isa.

And The Malaysian Insider understands signs are that Umno’s top leaders are leaning towards making Isa the candidate as well.

Deputy Umno president Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin is expected to make a formal announcement on Tuesday.

They believe Isa should not be punished twice for his past infractions.

In short, the prevailing argument is that he has served his time, paid the price and should be allowed to stand as a candidate.

Umno leaders are favouring this argument despite some concerns brought up over Isa being perceived as a tainted candidate.

Among the most vocal critic of the idea of fielding Isa has been former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.

Dr Mahathir has argued that Umno’s image would be affected because it would be regarded as not being serious in fighting money politics if it chose as candidate someone who has been found guilty of political corruption.

The former PM said the public would view Isa’s potential candidacy as a reflection of Umno’s stand on corruption.

Isa was suspended for three years from Umno from June 24, 2005, for money politics in the 2004 Umno elections. He was originally suspended for six years but it was reduced after he appealed.

Nomination for the Bagan Pinang by-election has been fixed for Oct 3 and polling on Oct 11. The seat fell vacant following the death of Barisan Nasional incumbent Azman Mohammad Noor on Sept 4.

Bagan Pinang is situated within the Teluk Kemang parliamentary constituency of which Isa is the leader of the Umno division there.

Isa, who was Negeri Sembilan mentri besar for over two decades, is extremely popular in Teluk Kemang.

“He is so influential that if he tells people not to vote for Umno, they will not vote for Umno,” a local resident in Port Dickson told The Malaysian Insider.

His influence, and the unprecedentedly strong campaign to put him as a candidate, has caused top Umno leaders to favour Isa’s candidacy.

Party leaders here feel that it is important for Umno to send out a message that those who own up to their mistakes and remain loyal to the party must also be given recognition.

But they also feel that if Isa is nominated and wins the seat, as is expected, it will not mean that he is an MB candidate.

There will be no executive role for him, said Umno sources.

But Isa’s supporters are likely to make a case for him to replace Datuk Seri Mohamad Hassan as MB again.

The Malaysian Insider understands that at least five of the eight Umno divisions in the state are in favour of fielding the former mentri besar in the seat

Explosive firework thrown at Sarawak DAP Chairman’s house

SIBU, Sept 27 — It was a rude shock for the state DAP chairman Wong Ho Leng when he discovered an explosive firework, which failed to ignite, at his house compound at 7am today.

“This type of explosive, which can produce a powerful and deafening explosion, is more dangerous than a molotov cocktail,” he told reporters at his house at Ipoh Road.

Wong, a practising lawyer and the assemblyman for Bukit Assek, said he had lodged a police report over the matter.

“I never expected that I would be a target. The police asked me whether I made enemies recently; honestly, it is impossible for a politician not to have political enemies,” he said.

He believed the explosive could have been thrown at his house after 1am as he did not notice anything when he returned from a gathering at about midnight last night.

“Thank God it failed to explode although it had been ignited,” said Wong who has been staying there for the past 19 years with his family.

He said that this was not the first time that DAP politicians in the state had been targeted.

“Recently, molotov cocktails were thrown into the compound of the house of Bandar Kuching DAP member of parliament Chong Chieng Jen.

“I condemn these unscrupulous acts,” he said. — Bernama

Let the show go on, Rais tells Beyonce critics

KUALA KLAWANG, Sept 27 — US pop star Beyonce Knowles can perform in Malaysia as long as she follows the rules, Datuk Seri Rais Yatim said in face of an uproar among conservative Muslims protesting the sexy singer’s show next month.

The information, communication and culture minister’s support for the Beyonce’s Oct 25 show came after he relented to allow Muslims to watch US hiphop group Black Eyed Peas perform at the Guinness’ Arthur’s Day in Sunway Lagoon last Friday. Muslims were initially barred from the event sponsored by the global beverage company celebrating its 250th anniversary.

Both Beyonce and Black Eyed Peas headlined the F1 Rocks show in Singapore last night as a prelude to the Singapore GP race later tonight.

“If she deliberately bares her body and violates the conditions imposed by the authorities, then she would be prevented from performing,” he told reporters after hosting an Aidilfitri open house here yesterday.

He said those opposing her show should be patient and see whether it adhered to the conditions imposed, and it would certainly be wrong if the show offended the religion

He noted that protests against popular Western entertainers coming to perform in Malaysia were nothing new. Among those protesting the show is the PAS Youth, which has a history of opposing concerts in Malaysia on grounds that it would affect the morals of youths in the country.

For the Black Eyed Peas show last Friday, Malaysian authorities made the organisers stream concert-goers into Muslim and non-Muslim gates although the concert itself was not divided into sections..

Malaysia has hosted several international acts over the years but Beyonce shelved her Malaysian concert also in late 2007 and went to perform in Indonesia after pressure to cover up and tone down what was seen as a sexually-provocative performance.

However, singer Gwen Stefani dressed modestly during her concert in 2007 while organisers for the Pussy Cat Dolls concert in Sunway Lagoon were fined for their sexy performance in 2006.

Most internationals have lined up to perform in either Bangkok, Jakarta or Singapore rather than face protests in Malaysia, preventing the country from being a top destination for pop stars.

Singapore has taken advantage of such restrictions in Malaysia to attract top acts and Malaysian audience to concerts in the island state.

Apart from Beyonce and the Black Eyed Peas, the Singapore F1 Rocks concert saw the reunion of No Doubt and appearances by Simple Minds, ZZ Top, Jacky Cheung, Da Mouth and Sodagreen.

Heritage houses in Malacca restored

MALACCA, Sept 27 — The building in Malacca is next door to where hit Chinese drama serial The Little Nyonya was filmed.

Dating back to 150 years ago, it is now owned by the National University of Singapore (NUS) and has been restored.

The building — two linked heritage townhouses at 54 and 56 Jalan Tun Tan Cheng Lock — was opened yesterday by the Governor of Malacca.

NUS received $1.5 million (RM3.6 million) from Ms Agnes Tan, the last surviving child of Straits Chinese community leader Tan Cheng Lock, to buy and restore the two houses in 2004. That enabled a team of six academics and undergraduates from the university’s Department of Architecture of the School of Design and Environment to work with a Malacca-based conservation architect. The team retained many interior features.

“For students, this shows them that we can reuse a building, while being sensitive to its history and respecting its original function,” said NUS president Tan Chorh Chuan.

The building, which will be used as a field school and resource centre, has been through many incarnations, including as a maternity clinic and a resthouse.

Said department head Wong Yunn Chii: “When we first started work on the houses, they were in a state of disrepair. The roof had given way, as had some floorboards.”

Materials such as old wood beams and bricks were reused to restore the houses and retain their heritage.

Associate Professor Johannes Widodo, also from the Department of Architecture, noted that there are only two air-conditioned rooms. The idea was to make the houses as naturally cool as possible.

“When we had a recent workshop, it was only 28 deg C inside on a 33-degree day,” he said.

Ms Tan’s donation will also fund up to four scholarships in architecture worth up to $20,000 every year, to support research and education. They are open to students from NUS and universities in South-east Asia.

The 89-year-old attributed childhood memories of a seaside villa in Klebang, north of Malacca town, to her wish to share Asian architecture and culture with others.

She said: “I and two of my sisters, Alice and Nellie, never got married, and Alice always encouraged us to have a worthy plan with the inheritance we received from our father.

“Baba House and the Malacca townhouses came about just when I was considering a gift to NUS in memory of my father. It’s actually a joint effort between my dear, late sister Alice and me.”

She donated $4 million to help NUS buy and restore Baba House here to showcase Peranakan heritage in 2005. — Straits Times

Did you hear the joke about Mahathir and Samy? - Anil Netto

A bit of comic relief this Sunday, courtesy of Mahathir via Bernama:

Asked whether (the new) Makkal Sakti (party) would affect MIC’s position as the main Indian-based party in the country, Dr Mahathir said: “I think MIC’s influence has already been diluted.”

Asked on reports that MIC president Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu might consider taking a two-month break from his duties as party president, Dr Mahathir said two months was not enough.

“It should be extended to about 20 years. He has been there for 30 years. The longer he (Samy Vellu) sits there, the more people are going to hate him,” he said.

Is Mahathir speaking from experience? The irony is that Mahathir himself should have gone on extended leave as well instead of staying on as PM for 22 long years.

Will Samy now respond, “Saya penuh-penuh sokong cadangan Dato Seri”?

How times have changed; it seems like only yesterday when the two of them were best of buddies. Remember how before Mahathir could finish his sentence, Samy would be leaping from his seat to express full support?

A poorly conceived plot — Tay Tian Yan

My Sinchew

SEPT 26 — We shouldn't point our finger at Datuk Seri Ong Tee Keat or Datuk Seri Chua Soi Lek.

If we really must put the blame on someone, let it be the MCA secretary-general.

The battle between MCA's top duo is a mini soap opera that shouldn't last anything more than two weeks, judging from the plot development.

But, the secretary-general obviously fails to have a good sense of time, and has forced it in the slot for a lengthy drama.

That has made things real bad. From late August till now, the drama has run for almost an entire month. Whatever content that needs to be played would have been done by now!

However, the show has to keep running until Oct 10 and there's no way we can put an abrupt end to it anytime sooner.

As such, the storyline has to be dragged on and the plot keeps being lengthened.

In the end, the storyline gets duller and duller with no new developments in sight. The actors have become exhausted while most of the supporting actors have quietly vanished.

The audience is getting bored, waiting only for the grand finale, but that wouldn't come any sooner than two weeks later!

The media are the worst hit. Something must be fed into newspaper pages, or the slots dedicated to it in TV news. They must come out with something about the MCA crisis.

Perhaps the producer could feel the dilemma we are in, or perhaps they just want to perk up the box office, they have come up with yet another impromptu plot: the re-emergence of the sex VCDs.

Even if the VCDs are to be distributed freely, due to its poor lighting effects, monotonous cinematographic skills and obscure identities of the lead roles — with only dark shadows wriggling about on the screen — no one can tell for sure whether it is X-rated porn or an eerie ghost movie.

While the producer may have put in tremendous effort, the storyline is too antiquated while the content simply too rotten. In the end, we get more boos than wows from the audience.

Like in the movie “Internal Affairs”, what the audience really wants to see is who between Tony Leung and Andy Lau will eventually survive or get killed. Imagine if the producer has wanted to drag on with the drama, dumping in a few more unrelated characters and plots instead of unveiling the mystery, you can imagine how frustrated the audience will get.

This is what we mean by a bad movie that fails to draw the crowd yet has to be dragged on and on. How irritating!

If a movie is supposed to be only 120 minutes long, we shouldn't stretch it to 180 minutes. No one will be amused by it for sure.

To be frank, the longer the drama gets dragged along, the deeper will MCA's image plummet.

I'm afraid that is the actual finale.

Dr M: Makkal Sakti a trump card

The Star

KUALA LUMPUR: The newly-formed Malaysia Makkal Sakti Party could be Barisan Nasional’s trump card in regaining the support of the Indian community with the MIC losing grassroots support.

Former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad believes the formation of the party would help garner support from the Indian community.

“There seems to be a lot of support for the formation of this party. I think it is a good thing because we don’t want to lose the support of the Indians,” he said at his Hari Raya open house in Seri Kembangan yesterday.

Asked if the formation of another Indian party would dilute MIC’s influence further, he replied: “Well, I think the influence of MIC has already been diluted.”

Dr Mahathir also mocked MIC president Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu’s decision to take two months’ leave from his presidential duties.

It was reported that Samy Vellu would take a two-month break as part of his strategy in relinquishing his post.

His deputy Datuk G. Palanivel would temporarily take over his duties.

“It (the break) should be extended to 20 years. Twenty years would be okay,” he said.

Dr Mahathir pointed out that he had served for 22 years and yet he was willing to let go of his position.

“He cannot sit there for more than 30 years, much longer than me. When I relinquished my post, there was not much hatred. The longer he sits there, more people will hate (him for it),” he said.

On another matter, Dr Maha-thir again said Tan Sri Mohd Isa Samad should not take part in the Bagan Pinang by-election as a candidate.

“If I were Isa, I would ask not to be nominated. On the contrary, I would work hard to help the nominated candidate win and with that, Isa’s name would be revered. In Malaysia, there is no such culture, we have the culture of wanting everything,” he said.

“We do not just want to win. If we win (with a tainted candidate), it would embarrass us.

“If the candidate is not clean and we allow him victory, it is not good,” he said.

Obama Accuses Iran Of Evasion Before Geneva Talks


U.S. President Barack Obama gestures as he speaks about health care reform at the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation's Annual Phoenix Awards Dinner in Washington September 26, 2009. REUTERS/Yuri Gripas
By Caren Bohan and Hossein Jaseb WASHINGTON/TEHRAN, Sept 27 (Reuters) - U.S. President Barack Obama said on Saturday the discovery of a secret nuclear plant in Iran showed a "disturbing pattern" of evasion by Tehran that added urgency to its talks on Thursday with world powers.

Iran's ambassador to the U.N.'s nuclear watchdog said Tehran was arranging for International Atomic Energy Agency inspections at the site "in the very near future," although other Iranian officials struck a defiant note.

One said he hoped Iran's second nuclear enrichment site, under construction southwest of Tehran, would soon be ready to "blind" Iran's enemies.

But Ali Asghar Soltanieh, Iran's ambassador to the IAEA, said he foresaw a quick visit to the site by agency inspectors, although he called the Obama administration's response to the plant's disclosure "discouraging" and a "political show." U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton welcomed Soltanieh's statement on IAEA inspections, telling reporters, "It is always welcome when Iran makes a decision to comply with the international rules and regulations and particularly with respect to the IAEA." Iran, which says its nuclear program is aimed at electricity generation rather than weapons production as feared by the West, will meet the United States and five other powers in the Swiss city of Geneva on Thursday.

A senior U.S. administration official said the six powers were preparing "a set of transparency demands" focused on the secret uranium enrichment plant near Qom, a Shi'ite Muslim holy city south of Tehran.

"Those demands include unfettered access for the IAEA to the Qom facility, the people working there, and timelines related to its development," the official said.

"The timeline for this demand for this information about Qom will be weeks." It is expected the demands will be presented to Iran at the Geneva meeting.

Obama warned Iran on Friday it would face "sanctions that bite" if it did not come clean.

"This is a serious challenge to the global non-proliferation regime and continues a disturbing pattern of Iranian evasion," he said in his weekly radio and Internet address on Saturday.

"That is why international negotiations with Iran scheduled for October 1 now take on added urgency," he said.

Britain, France and Germany have joined the United States in raising the prospect of new sanctions against Iran if it did not take steps to allay concerns about its nuclear program.

Russia also signaled a greater willingness to go along with sanctions, while China said it favored a "dual track" approach of pressure and talks.

U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon expressed "grave concern" in talks with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on Friday and said Tehran had to show its intent was peaceful.

"He emphasized that the burden of proof is on Iran," Ban's press office said in a statement.

Adding to the tension, Iranian media said Iran's elite Revolutionary Guards would hold missile defense exercises starting on Sunday and taking place over several days.

COMPLETELY STUNNED

Iran acknowledged it had a uranium enrichment facility near Qom for the first time on Monday in a letter to the IAEA.

The head of Iran's atomic energy organization said Iran thought the disclosure would be welcomed. "We are completely stunned and we were anticipating that the Western countries would welcome this measure by Iran," Ali Akbar Salehi said.

In comments carried by state broadcaster IRIB, Salehi said having two uranium enrichment sites, one near Qom and the other at Natanz, was prudent, given "the unceasing threat of some enemies." "The Natanz site enjoys complete defensive capability, but the new site excludes any possibility of stopping Iran's peaceful nuclear activity," he said.

U.S. officials said the disclosure was aimed at pre-empting an announcement by Western governments, which were aware of the site. The IAEA demanded immediate access.

Low-enriched uranium can be used as fuel for power plants, while highly enriched uranium can be used to make bombs.

Ahmadinejad said on Friday the plant near Qom was about 18 months away from start-up, legal and open for IAEA inspection and Western powers would regret accusing Iran of hiding it.

"It's not a secret site," he told a news conference in New York where he was attending the U.N. General Assembly.

Salehi said the plant was about 100 km (60 miles) south of Tehran, towards Qom. "There was absolutely no necessity for us to make any announcement on the facility since we are a year-plus before its completion," he said on state television.

Mohammad Mohammadi-Golpayegani, who heads the office of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei was quoted as saying the plant would start running "soon." "This new plant, God willing, will soon become operational and will make the enemies blind," the semi-official Fars News Agency quoted him as saying.

The foreign minister of Israel, which has refused to rule out pre-emptive military action to stop Iran developing an atomic weapon, called for an "unequivocal" response.

"The disagreement (on whether Iran is developing military nuclear capability) has been done away with," right-winger Avigdor Lieberman told Israel Radio. -Reuters

India hails Moon mission 'find' (BBC)

Lunar surface
The quantity of water found was small, but could become a useful resource.

India's inaugural Moon mission has been hailed as a "grand success" by the head of India's space agency, after helping find evidence of water on the Moon.

Indian Space Research Organisation (Isro) chief G Madhavan Nair said a spacecraft probe found more water on the Moon "than was expected."

The mission was terminated last month after communication was lost with the orbiting spacecraft.

The craft was launched last October for a two-year mission of exploration.

Data from three spacecraft, including India's Chandrayaan probe, has shown that very fine films of H2O coat the particles that make up the lunar dirt, US space agency Nasa announced.

The quantity is tiny but could become a useful resource for astronauts wishing to live on the Moon, scientists say.

"We truly believe it is a path-breaking finding. But this is just the beginning," Mr Nair said.

"Indians should be proud of the fact that the Chandrayaan enabled the discovery of water on the Moon," he said.

Indian scientists have welcomed the discovery and said more studies needed to be done to find out how much water was available and whether it was fit for human consumption.

'Significant'

"The results suggest that frost rather than water is present in the form of a thin film on the lunar surface. The quantity and its distribution across the Moon is still an open question," K Kasturirangan, a former chief of Isro told the Press Trust of India press agency.

"Ultimately, in the long run if humankind has to go and inhabit the Moon, one of the important requirements is that you should have adequate water for survival," he said.

An Indian scientist working in Nasa said it was a "significant discovery"

"It is a very significant finding if we ever are to venture out to set up a base anywhere in the solar system, the Moon is the nearest destination," Amitabha Ghosh said.

The Indian media has also hailed the role of Chandrayaan in the finding.

One Big Step for India, A Giant Leap for Mankind, headlined The Times Of India newspaper.

"[The finding] has helped shake off the failure tag from the Chandrayaan project that was aborted last month," the paper said.

The mission was expected to cost 3.8bn rupees (£45m; $78m), considerably less than Japanese and Chinese probes sent to the Moon last year.

But the Indian government's space efforts have not been welcomed by all.

Some critics regard the space programme as a waste of resources in a country where millions still lack basic services.

Michael Jackson tapes reveal his soul, former adviser says

LOS ANGELES, California (CNN) -- Michael Jackson feared his father so much he would faint or vomit sometimes when his father entered the room -- even when the pop singer was an adult, according to a book written by a former Jackson confidant.

Rabbi Shmuley Boteach, Michael Jackson's confidant, sat down with the King of Pop and taped 30 hours of interviews.

Rabbi Shmuley Boteach, Michael Jackson's confidant, sat down with the King of Pop and taped 30 hours of interviews.

"The Michael Jackson Tapes" includes Jackson talking about his fear of growing old, his relationship with children, his friendships with Madonna and Brooke Shields, and his remarkable shyness around people that made his surround himself with mannequins.

Jackson opened up to Rabbi Shmuley Boteach for 30 hours of interviews, which were taped nine years ago and intended for a book Jackson wanted written, Boteach said.

"He was trying to reclaim his life," Boteach said Friday in an NBC "Today Show" interview.

Jackson, who died on June 25 of what the coroner found to be a deadly combination of drugs, "lost the will to live, I think he was just going through the motions of life toward the end," Boteach told NBC.

CNN has not independently confirmed Jackson's quotes in the book, but Boteach was known to be a spiritual adviser to Jackson for several years beginning about 1999.

Ken Sunshine, spokesman for the family, including the singer's father, Joe, issued a statement on the book. "We are not going to dignify this with a comment," he said.

The book was not published during Jackson's lifetime because of the pop star's child molestation trial, which ended with an acquittal in 2005, the author said. The author said Jackson's arrest ended any interest in a book about him.

"I don't want to grow old," Jackson is quoted as saying in one interview with Boteach.

"When the body breaks down and you start to wrinkle, I think it's so bad," Jackson said.

Jackson talked to Boteach about why he was drawn to children, especially those who were sick.

"I love them. I love them," he said.

Helping children enjoy their childhood is his mission, Jackson said.

"I feel that this is something really, really in my heart that I am supposed to do, and I feel so loved by giving my love, and I know that's what they need," he said.

Jackson said that while adults "appreciate me artistically as a singer and a songwriter and a dancer and a performer," children "just want to have some fun and to give love and have love and they just want to be loved and held."

Boteach, in an interview about two years before Jackson's November 2003 arrest, asked Jackson about the young cancer patient who would later become his main accuser.

"He's special," Jackson said.

Boteach asked Jackson whether by speaking to people like the boy "part of the pain goes away for them."

"Absolutely," Jackson said. "Because every time I talk to him he is in better spirits. When I spoke to him last night he said, 'I need you. When are you coming home?' I said, 'I don't know.' He said, 'I need you, Michael.' Then he calls me 'Dad.'"

Michael Jackson's taped statements about his father's treatment of him as a child echoed what he has said previously.

"He was rough, the way he would beat you, you know, was hard," Jackson said. "He would make you strip nude first. He would oil you down. It would be a whole ritual. He would oil you down so when the flip of an ironing cord hit you, you know, and, it was just like me dying, and you had whips all over your face, your back, everywhere. And I always hear my mother like, 'No, Joe, you're gonna kill him. You're gonna kill him. No.' And I would just give up, like there was nothing I could do. And I hated him for it. Hated him."

Joe Jackson has denied physically abusing his son. "Now, Michael was never beaten by me, I've never beaten at all," he told CNN's Larry King in July. He did suggest he used spankings for disciplining his children.

Another Michael Jackson quote from the book alleged emotional abuse by Joe Jackson:

"God bless my father because he did some wonderful things and he was brilliant, he was a genius, but one day he said, 'If you guys ever stop singing I will drop you like a hot potato.' It hurt me. You would think he would think, 'These kids have a heart and feelings.' Wouldn't he think that would hurt us? If I said something like that to Prince and Paris, that would hurt. You don't say something like that to children and I never forgot it. It affects my relationship with him today."

Jackson told Boteach he was still "scared of my father to this day."

"My father walked in the room -- and God knows I am telling the truth -- I have fainted in his presence many times. I have fainted once to be honest. I have thrown up in his presence because when he comes in the room and this aura comes and my stomach starts hurting and I know I am in trouble. He is so different now. Time and age has changed him and he sees his grandchildren and he wants to be a better father. It is almost like the ship has sailed its course, and it is so hard for me to accept this other guy that is not the guy I was raised with. I just wished he had learned that earlier."

In the excerpts provided to CNN by the book's publisher, there were no quotes from Jackson discussing his drug use, but Boteach does write about what he saw during the several years he was Jackson's spiritual adviser, starting in 1999.

While Boteach said he never personally saw Jackson use drugs, he did suspect it. "In the time that I knew him, he always seemed intent on me having a positive view of him and nothing untoward was ever done in my presence," he wrote.

While their close relationship ended around the time of the molestation charges, Boteach said Jackson's parents reached out to him later for help in convincing him to enter drug rehab.

"Perhaps I could inspire Michael to make that decision, and his parents thought I could at least help," Boteach said. "But I knew they were wrong. Michael had long since ceased taking my counsel. He found my advice too demanding. I was an irritant and was treated as such."

He said he told Joe and Katherine Jackson that "it was imperative for them to save their son's life by becoming available parents in his greatest hour of need."

Sometimes those closest to Jackson were not people -- but mannequins, the book said. Jackson said he was so shy at times he surrounded himself with dummies.

"Because I felt I needed people, someone, and I didn't have," he said. "I was too shy to be around real people."

Boteach, in the NBC interview Friday, said it made his skin crawl to hear that.

"His celebrity had created a degree of isolation where he could not simply feel comfortable around other people," Boteach said. "He thought that everybody wanted something from him. He felt that he was trapped in this cocoon of fame and that there was some exploitative relationship with virtually everyone that he met."

The book does offer insight into Jackson's dating of celebrity women, including actress Brooke Shields.

"That was one of the loves of my life," Jackson said. "I just wished she loved me as much as I loved her, you know."

He told Boteach one problem he had with women was their jealousy of his fame.

"They admire you and know you're wonderful and great, but just they're jealous because they wish they were in your place, with they were in your shoes. And 'M' is one of them -- Madonna. Hate to say that on tape."

CNN asked Madonna's publicist Liz Rosenberg for a response:

"Madonna was very fond of Michael Jackson (as she clearly expressed in her tribute to him at the VMA's) and I doubt anything in the book will change her mind," Rosenberg said.

Kugan: Petition to palace fails

Kugan: Petition to palace fails - Malaysiakini

An attempt to submit a petition calling for a speedy probe into the death of detainee A Kugan to Istana Negara today was unsuccessful as the police refused to allow more than three persons to meet palace officials.

Some 20 people, including the deceased family members and supporters led by members of parliament Gobind Singh Deo (DAP-Puchong) and S Manikavasagam (PKR-Kapar) left the palace at 11.30am dejected.

“The family members alone consist of three people... what about their lawyer and the MPs accompanying the family? We too want to meet the palace officials when the petition is submitted,” said Gobind.

Also present were supporters of the banned Hindu Right Action Force (Hindraf) and newly-formed Human Right Party (HRP) members lead by its secretary-general P Uthayakumar.

petition to investigate kugan's death to istana 260909 kugan mother cryKugan's mother N Indra, his sister S Garthiyaini and brothers Iswara and Shargunan were also present.

Distraught by the police' refusal to let all of them to submit their petition, Indra broke in tears as her lawyer N Surendran and the parliamentarians tried to negotiate with the police.

She could hardly say much apart from demanding that justice be served and punishment meted out against her son's murderers.

petition to investigate kugan's death to istana 260909 argueGobind said he could not understand the "logic" of the police's refusal to allow more people to meet the palace officials.

"Firstly, it was not our intention to go into the palace, it was our intention to hand over the petition to the palace officials outside," said Gobind.

"We were there as a peaceful group, it was not our intention to create a ruckus... but the police did not seem to understand this," he said.

AG duty bound to take action

He also demanded that attorney-general Abdul Gani Patail to come forward and explain why nothing has been done in the past eight months.

"He (Abdul Gani) is duty-bound to explain to the public... I also ask why isn't the prime minister showing similar concern in this case as he did in the case of political aide Teoh Being Hock, who was found dead at the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission in Shah Alam," quizzed Gobind.

"The entire country cannot understand why the silence on the part of the AG, who had already classified it (Kugan's case) as a murder," asked Gobind.

petition to investigate kugan's death to istana 260909 uthayakumarUthayakumar added that Kugan's death was just the "tip of the iceberg" on deaths in police custody.

"The behaviour of the Brickfields OCPD Asst Comm Wan Abdul Bari Wan Abdul Khalid is not exemplary to the prime minister's call for One Malaysia," said Uthayakumar.

"While the government is saying the country will be more liberal by reviewing the Internal Security Act and Police Act, the implementation at ground level is not consistence," he said.

When approached by reporters Abdul Bari described the group as being unreasonable because they had initially agreed to a delegation comprising three people.

"However, despite the palace allowing up to five people to meet them, the whole group insisted on going in," Abdul Bari said.

Kugan, 23, died in custody at the Taipan police station in USJ on Jan 20 after being detained for questioning as part of an investigation into several luxury car theft cases.

The first autopsy conducted by the Serdang Hospital concluded that Kugan had died from liquid in his lungs.

Dissatisfied with the report, his family demanded that a second post-mortem to be done, as a video clip taken at the Serdang Hospital mortuary revealed severe bruising on Kugan's body.

Following massive public outcry accusing the police of foul play, AG Abdul Gani reclassified the case as murder and a day later 11 officers from the Taipan police station were transferred and put on desk duty.

The police had in April seized Kugan's blood and tissue samples from the second pathologist's office in Universiti Malaya Medical Centre.

Currently, the Malaysian Medical Council (MMC) is probing Dr Karim Tajuddin's professional conduct in relation to the cause of Kugan's death in the first post-mortem report at Serdang.

'We will not stop here'

The number of police officers, including Light Strike Force personnel, exceeded the number of the supporters gathered at the palace gates this morning.

petition to investigate kugan's death to istana 260909 fru"This again reflects the draconian manner in which the police are prepared to act in cases where they are alleged to be the suspects," blasted Gobind.

Gobind said further that the police should not have impeded their programme as their petition was against the lackadaisical attitude in the enforcement authorities.

"The police ought not to have interfered today because the complaint we are raising is squarely against them so it is difficult to understand how they can be independent in this circumstance," he said.

"The home minister should explain why a group of Malaysians in small numbers cannot handover a memorandum to their king... everyday you see tourists and foreigners taking photographs at the gates of the palace but the rakyat have to face a barricade of police officers to give a letter to king," he lamented.

"We make very clear we will not stop here and we will return soon... we sincerely hope that we will be allowed to hand over the petition next time without any interference," said Gobind, adding that he would be raising the matter in Parliament when it resume sitting on Oct 19.

Human rights lawyer Surendran, who is representing Kugan's family, said that they have evidence that the latter was "cold-bloodedly murdered".

"The specimens that we were supposed to have taken for toxicology would have given further proof the police had deliberately and intentionally murdered him," stressed Surendran.

There is a high-powered prosecution team that is fighting to stop us from obtaining the samples, said Surendran, adding that the judge is expected to rule on the matter which is coming up on Oct 2.

Kugan's mother has applied to the court for the samples, which were taken from the pathologist who did the second post-mortem, to be returned.

Comments from Malaysiakini:-

by X'roy

Kugan's death was a murder, it was classified such by the IGP himself, so how do you expect this Police under this IGP to implicate themselves by freeing the samples so that the credibility of that statement, "Kugan was murdered" made by this IGP stands. Kugan died after giving the Police some valuable insights into how luxury cars were stolen, he died in the custody of the Police, and therefore the Police are responsible. For them to now hide behind the samples of his DNA is totally unacceptable, with all this in place how do we trust such a Police force and how do we trust this IGP whose term has been extended twice, The next question is why has this IGP's position been extended twice, aren't there any other capable men in the force to take over, or is he being kept there because he has been UMNO's good boy all this while?

by Anak Desa

Kugan's family should file a complaint against the Malaysian Government with the UNITED NATIONS Human rights commission and let all the news channels carry the news. I may not agree what was kugan's job but a human life shouldnt be taken away just like that by the cops and their cohorts syndicate

by Habib RAK

The Brickfields OCPD Asst Comm Wan Abdul Bari Wan Abdul Khalid is such an embarassment. Even his subordinates are embarassed by his behavior. I guess he loves to make a fool of himself time and again. A real idiot who doesnt realise that his silly antics are being captured on video. Soon his family and his children will be embarassed of him when they see the video clip. They will ask him "ayah kenape menyalak macam anjing?"

by P.Dev Anand Pillai - 3 hours ago

If the Indians can still vote the BN after witnessing how the OCPD of Brickfields screamed at the group who tried to present a petition to the King, then there is nothing that can be done to help them. PMs can come and go, MIC Chiefs can come and go, Indian based parties can come and go but if the Indians still keep voting the BN, then they will keep us where they feel is right that is at the bottom most. What happenned to Kugan can happen to any Indian family who have sons and if we do not react to this, the police will feel that their treatment of those who are in their custody is right. Therefore, the only way to respond to this is to keep voting against them until they rehabilitate but sadly, they know that the Indians can be easily divided and targeted if some money and perks are throne in. So the Indians have no one else but themselves to blame for such a predicament to the Indian

he Indians have no one else but themselves to blame for such a predicament to the Indian race in Malaysia today. I salute Kugan's mother.

by fairnessforall

In any case, the palace should not have refused to accept the petition. This shows they have double standards. They should have insisted that 3 people as agreed go in and accept the petition. The police as we already know will always bully the public, so why give them a chance by going against what was agreed on as that will only give them a reason for rejecting. The main object on submitting the petition should have been done by just sending in 3 people and not insisting that many go in

by ANTI BODEK

APA SUDAH JADI DENGAN NEGARA KITA YANG MENGAMALKAN SISTEM BERAJA. APA GUNANYA AGONG YANG TIADA PEKA DENGAN MASALAH RAKYAT. DI MALAYSIA POLIS YANG BERKUASA ATAU AGONG YANG BERKUASA? MALAYSIA BELUM MERDEKA LAGI. KALAU TIDAK , MASALAH INI DAPAT DISELESAIKAN DALAM MASA TERDEKAT. AYO RAKYAT BANGUN DAN BERSUARA SERTA BERDOA KEPADA TUHAN SUPAYA TUHAN MEMBUKA HATI AGONG UNTUK MENDENGAR SUARA RAKYAT BUKANNYA KRONI BN DAN LAIN-LAIN.

by SMC77

I am speechless to see the development of this case. Let us vote the BN out and bring the justice to Kugan and his family even this means that we need to fire half of the police force to clean up the whole system.

by justice seeker

I salute the 2 MPs, Tiger of Puchong YB Gobind Singh and the Maratamizhan YB Manika. Lawyer Surendran who should have been an MP also deserves my salutation for their persistent pursuing of Kugan's case. Its a joy watching YB Gobind arguing his case in the TBH inquest at times exihibiting the traits of his father Singh is King--who is unofficially recognised as the best criminal lawyer in the country. In no time YB Gobind will be claiming that throne. We need more people like him who challenges the authority fearlessly. The Indians should give total support to the young leaders like YB Gobind,YB Manika and the very promising lawyer Mr Surendran.

by concern citizen

bodoh bangang punya polis... Agong itu orang le bukan Tuhan Yang Maha Kuasa. Kalau memorandum tak boleh terima daripada rakyat. apa gunanya ada Agong di negara ini yang tak boleh dengar deritan rakyat jelata......... sungguh memalukan..... bubar aje kuasa sultan di negara ini seprti apa yang berlaku di Nepal..

by Loyal Malaysian

My battle cry has been Justice for Beng Hock! But it is also justice for Kugan and all suspicous police custodial death! Why the intolerance? Why the high-handed measure to deny the family of solace knowing they have appealed to the highest authority of our country?

by Victor Johan

It seems this OCPD of the Brickfields Police Station is hailer-crazy. He warns to give 3 warnings (Tiga amaran) but keeps screaming many times to have the crowd disperse, even when the crowd already moved on. What a scum, to the highest order!! He forgot that there were educated, highly qualified professionals, Members of Parliament, people who can easily 'pocket' him, literally. His occupational days are numbered. Anyway, I understand that he has a filthy rich lifestyle. Wonder where he gets more than his officially salary and perks. Any guesses why so many pubs, karaoke, messes and dents operate at Brickfields area without any problems, only occasional premeditate raids? I was told that you could actually find him and his boys often at the dandut outlets and massage palours there too. They go there in plain clothes, apparently 'under cover' for investigations. And some of them actually end up 'under the covers' too, you know what I mean? Ingat kita semua masih bodoh atau takut kah?

by Victor Johan

Two thoughts come to my mind: First, let's check/investigate the background of this "hello hello hello hello hello this is OCPD Brickfield". For now he has portrayed himself to be an uncouth scum. Second, lodge new reports at the Taipan and Brickfields police stations, include the report of confiscation of the medical details and reports from UMMC. Also scan and distribute the petition you were to hand over to the Agung. We want a statement from the Agung if he is the RAJA of Malaysia or is it that the Malaysian Police Force (PDRM) now is called "POLIS RAJA DI MALAYSIA". With PR moving into Putrajaya with the most definite more than 2/3 majority, the constituition can be changed with ease, so beware royalties.

by low siew chuen

Cannot see others comments This happens for most articles. Please assist.

by Keanjin

The OCPD BF really got a bad 'image' the way he talk is very rude and act like lower class officer!

by Ayahanda

Well, I won't be surprised if the Police and our BN gove asks " Kugan, what Kugan? Never heard of him before!" To the best of my knowledge, the AG, the Police and the rest of "their gang" have completely forgotten Kugan because he is of no advantage to them. What was MIC, PPP, MCA, Gerakan and our newbie Makkal Sakti parties to say?

by Arul Inthirarajah

They should bring Saiful along. They will be given an immediate audience with Najib.

by ND2817

Its a Police state...We should give the petition to the Police instead of Agong..coz..Polis RAJA di Malaysia...

by koh jen yen

I guess is indeed to much to ask especially the suspect is the police themselve.. So one up for selective policing..

by Sentinel

Rejecting a petition from a helpless family who lost a loved one based on the excuse of too many people is just too much... I hope some people who live a life of luxury based on taxpayers' money understand they are responsible to the taxpayers / rakyat. Kugan will not rest in peace until justice is delivered.

Samy sees short exit, no long goodbye - Malaysiakini

MIC strongman S Samy Vellu is said to be seriously considering going on leave for two months from his presidential duties. This would perhaps be in three months' time at the very earliest.

This is part of his tentative exit strategy, he disclosed, during two telephone calls late yesterday to Malaysiakini.

He intends to be extremely careful with the timing in order to prevent the MIC from descending into a prolonged state of "chaos, disunity and instability" after his departure.

"I will take the two months off from my duties as MIC president to let (G) Palanivel, my deputy, fill in for me during my absence," said Samy.

"I won't be trying him out during the two months like what Mahathir did with Anwar Ibrahim."

NONESamy Vellu (left) was following up on a statement by Palanivel that "the ball is now in Samy Vellu's court".

Earlier, underlining that a transition was more imminent than ever, Samy Vellu had told the media figuratively: "I will ask Palanivel whether he is ready to take over as MIC president. If he says he's ready, I will go the next day, perhaps even the same day itself".

Palanivel responded with his much talked about "ball" idiom but added, "I am sure the president knows what to do. It's not as if someone has to tell him. I am ready to take over anytime he says so. Meanwhile, I will continue working as usual".

'Won't destroy successors like others'

Samy Vellu reiterated that he has no plans to come back after the proposed two months and find fault with Palanivel, again referring to the Mahathir script with Anwar.

For better or worse, Palanivel will step into the president's post, assured Samy, "and I have no intention of destroying my deputy like what Mahathir did to all his potential successors and even his successor, all hand-picked by him, not the party members".

NONE"Even if Palanivel (right) is found wanting, I will hold my peace. Whether he fares well or does badly is up to him," said Samy Vellu in defining the importance of loyalty and standing by his men through thick and thin.

"I cannot support him for the deputy presidency and then later turn around and claim that he's not really suitable to be the MIC president. I don't play such evil games. We are people with human feelings."

His veiled reference to his former boss, Dr Mahathir Mohamad, was unmistakably clear although no names were mentioned.

The tentative exit strategy, as laid out by Samy Vellu, sees him going on leave probably during the January-February period next year.

He is expected to resume his duties as MIC president before his birthday on March 8.

Asked what he would be doing "over the next three months" if all goes according to plan, Samy stressed that he has loads of work to clear so that Palanivel's planned two-month takeover of his presidential duties would not be too taxing "since he has to carry on with the deputy president's duties at the same time".

No long goodbye

It has not been decided whether Palanivel would be acting president as well during the two-month stint besides being deputy president or would just continue in his elected role while merely standing in for the president.

The party will be guided by the MIC constitution on the matter, added Samy Vellu.

"This is a first for MIC. We haven't had this situation for a very long time."

mic elections 120909 samy gpThe MIC president recalled that he only became acting president in 1979 when the then president, V Manickavasagam, suddenly passed away half-way through his term.

The MIC president has not worked out a firm date for stepping down from his post after he resumes his presidential duties after the two-month stint envisaged for his deputy.

All he knows is that it would be somewhere in between March next year and 2012 when his term as president ends.

mic election 120909 crowdHowever, he envisages his departure would not be too far off from March next year and not near the end of his term.

He does not plan to hold out for the kind of long goodbye that Mahathir tearfully negotiated with Umno.

It will be a dignified exit, according to Samy Vellu.

"Palanivel would need a reasonable time as acting president before he seeks his own mandate," said Samy.

"Since he's new he can't expect to be returned unchallenged. There would many willing to take him on. So it would help if he can quickly establish a track record in the presidential office. For that, he has to be seen as the president in the eyes of the members."

Dr M, Umno kept MIC down

Samy Vellu agrees that he has been in the MIC president's post longer than he or anyone else intended but makes no apologies for this.

He genuinely believed he could make a historic difference.

NONE"I had a deputy president (S Subramaniam) who was just willing to be my number two for 25 years," said Samy Vellu.

"That's because he doesn't really see himself as number one. I figured him out a long time ago.

"He lacks the drive to be number one. If at all he went for my post it was simply because of betting groups around him pushing him into the arena."

"If I had my way, I wouldn't want someone being my deputy for such a long time but that was what the party members wanted. In the MIC, we don't destroy people for the sake of destroying them. The same thing with me staying on for three decades."

It was to re-create a party in perpetual renewal that future MIC presidents' term of office would be limited, after recent amendments to the party constitution, to three terms or nine years, said Samy Vellu.

"This would create a more dynamic leadership environment where there would be the possibility of upward mobility in leadership and change all the time to create opportunities for newcomers."

He agrees that he has not made as much a difference as he would have liked in the Indian community but says his hands were tied by the system and blames Mahathir and Umno for this.

The reaction as everybody knows, according to Samy Vellu, was the arrival of Hindraf (Hindu Rights Action Front) on the scene.

'Dr M did least for Indians'

"I am not trying to make up stories just as he (Mahathir) has been casting me as a liability to BN," said Samy Vellu.

"The fact is that he as the prime minister was not at all interested in any of the legitimate demands and aspirations of the Indian community and in fact did the least of all the prime ministers for the Indian community. So I did what I could for the community on my own through my NGO networking."

mahathir pc on bar council 191208 02He is confident that historians and future generations will be able to judge him better.

Samy Vellu said he has no defence whatsoever against Mahathir's constant accusations against him - "and he knows that" - because the cabinet papers are classified as official secrets.

These papers, it is said, provide all the solid proof on what transpired during cabinet meetings and "what I brought up on behalf of the Indian community".

Mahathir however told the people of Sungai Siput on the eve of the general elections last year that "Samy Vellu did not even open his mouth on Indian matters during cabinet meetings".

Eventually, many did not believe Mahathir's statement on Samy Vellu's silence, seeing it on further reflection as a gross exaggeration but the damage was done because of the timing.

The net effect was that Samy Vellu lost his parliamentary seat for the first time in his political career but isn't crying over spilt milk.

There's life after retirement

Apparently, Samy won't be walking off into the sunset after he leaves his duties as MIC president.

He sees himself being busy with "the six or seven NGOs" - not related to MIC - which he has set up over the years.

He has no intention to give up his duties here for the moment and will continue to be very actively involved especially in matters of education and the co-operative movement.

mic election 120909 samy votesThe NGOS will also be his refuge during his planned two months leave from his duties as MIC president.

Samy Vellu, elsewhere, has plans to pen his memoirs in English and Tamil, with translations to follow in Malay, Chinese, Iban and KadazanDusun.

"This would be my contribution towards the education of our younger and future generations in the history and politics of Malaysia," said Samy.

"Many things are yet to be written. One idea is to first serialise my memoirs every two weeks in the newspapers. I have a lot to tell."

Kugan : Justice Foil Again - Mp Kapar

An attempt by family member of A Kugan whom died while in custody to submit memorandum to HRH King requesting prompt action against their son’s killer was ruined by police.

Why Police and government very much afraid to further invesigations on cause of his death and detainee culprits involved? Whom do they try to protect?

Police cann’t even allow two minutes for the family and elected representatives to express grievance to HRH? When Citizen of the country thrown into the city protesting against marginalisation of Indians in Malaysia and against ISA , they said it’s not our culture and the need to gather in large scale? Today when we went peacefully in smaller group , they still trying to show off their power?

The power to act against marginalised only but when coming to arresting criminal they have no guts. Anyway, we will back in larger number soon to ensure our pleade reach HRH King .

click here to download the memorandum in pdf format.

Subra’s men allege cheating in MIC polls

By Baradan Kuppusamy -The Malaysian Insider

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 26 — At least seven candidates allied with former MIC deputy president Datuk S. Subramaniam who contested in the Sept 12 MIC elections alleged widespread and rampant irregularities today.

They are now demanding the MIC election commission nullify the polls and hold fresh elections.

Irregularities cited include party president Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu’s role in fielding his own team, supporting and campaigning for them and using his office and party facilities to ensure his team won.

The candidates, gathered under a MIC election irregularities committee, also alleged that rampant irregularities took place during balloting and counting of the votes.

“The mood on the floor for change and the outcome of the polls are totally different… it does not tally,” said Saraswathy Kandasamy, lawyer for the committee, at a press conference today.

S. Subramaniam lost in the fight for the deputy president’s post. — File pic

The complainants include vice-presidential candidate P. Subramaniam and six candidates for the central working committee. But ironically S. Subramaniam, who was defeated in a three-cornered fight for the deputy president’s post, is not a party to the demand to have fresh elections.

It is learnt that the seven candidates are acting on their own and without the green light from S. Subramaniam, who had fielded a team against Samy Vellu’s official line-up which won nearly all the posts.

In an immediate reaction, MIC election commission chairman Datuk K. Vijayanathan told The Malaysian Insider that the commission cannot entertain any request to nullify the elections or hold fresh elections.

He gave three reasons: the commission has no locus standi because the elections are over and the commission has “stood down”; the time frame to lodge complaints is within one week of the elections and not now and thirdly that all complaints should be addressed to the CWC.

The CWC meets on Tuesday and on its agenda is to accept and approve the election results, pass a vote of confidence in Samy Vellu and to consider whether S. Subramaniam be subjected to disciplinary action for alleged tarnishing the party image.

Subramaniam, 65, who lost narrowly by 82 votes, is under severe pressure from his supporters to make one of three choices — quit MIC, form a new party or join the Pakatan Rakyat.

Among the allegations made today was on the use of mobile phones.

P. Subramaniam, the V-P candidate and chairman of the irregularities committee, alleged that supporters of Samy Vellu were ordered to take a picture of their ballot papers with the markings in favour of his official line-up as proof that they had voted for the president.

The complainants alleged that the delegates were promised “remuneration” after showing the photo as proof of their voting preferences.

Subramaniam said the commission had barred delegates from carrying mobile phones when voting but Samy Vellu had intervened to allow them on condition the devices were switched off.

“Who is to know the phones are off or on,” said Subramaniam.

It is likely that the MIC will ignore these allegations and this could lead to a court battle over the election results.

“We would have fared better… maybe not a clean sweep but definitely better than the sham results we saw,” said Saraswathy.

Khairy: Pakatan incompetent, unfit to govern

Umno’s youth chief has questioned Pakatan Rakyat’s ability to govern at the federal level. — file pic

By Asrul Hadi Abdullah Sani - The Malaysian Insider

PUTRAJAYA, Sept 26 — Umno Youth Chief believes the current in-fighting between PAS, DAP and Party Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) proves that Pakatan Rakyat (PR) is not fit to rule at the federal level.

Cracks in the loose coalition began to reappear when Selangor PAS Commissioner Datuk Dr Hasan Ali criticised the state’s select committee for competency, accountability and transparency (Selcat) for “bullying public servants” during a recent public inquiry.

The outburst by the PAS leader has reignited discussions on Hasan’s loyalty and his party’s commitment to PR’s struggle in Selangor.

Hasan previously clashed with PR colleagues over the sale of beer at convenience outlets in Shah Alam, and a plan to empower mosque committee members and workers to police immoral activities in the state.

PAS state liaison committee secretary Mohd Khairuddin Othman has also issued a statement of the party’s support for Hasan and warned that the party was considering pulling out of the state government.

The relations among the three parties have reached a new low, forcing PAS’ powerful central committee to ask Hasan to explain himself.

Khairy Jamaluddin added that the disagreements in PR shows that “not all is well” in the coalition.

“The disagreement and in-fighting in Pakatan Rakyat, especially in Selangor which is taking place between Datuk Hasan Ali and the others in the Pakatan Rakyat state government is another indication that things are not all well and good in Pakatan Rakyat,” he told reporters at Tun Abdullah Badawi’s open house today.

Khairy wants Malaysians to realise the bickering and conflict was indicative of the type of government that PR will bring if the coalition wins the next general election.

“It’s a blessing that they are only a state government at the moment because the damage is contained, but can you imagine if they take over the federal government and they have disagreements every week, people from (different) parties calling for someone to be sacked?

“This is indiscipline of the highest order and I think if they cannot handle this indiscipline, inconsistency and, frankly speaking, this incompetence, I don’t think they are fit to be in the federal government,” he explained.

Khairy also shut the door on the possibility unity talk with PAS.

“We have long hoped for some sort of cooperation with PAS but every time we advance the idea, it has been rejected by some of PAS leadership,” he said.

Dr M backs Makkal Sakti

By Shazwan Mustafa Kamal - The Malaysian Insider

PUTRAJAYA, Sept 26 — The latest addition to the proliferation of Indian parties in the country, Makkal Sakti, received a confidence vote today from Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, who also pointed out that MIC president Datuk Seri S Samy Vellu had become a much hated leader.

The former prime minister told reporters today the potential inclusion of Makkal Sakti into the Barisan Nasional (BN) fold could be a good thing as it had garnered a lot of support from the Indian community.

“There is a lot of support for this party, which I think is a good thing. The party has proven itself to receive a large amount of support of the Indians,” said Dr Mahathir.

He said that BN needed to regain the support of the Indians, and that by supporting Makkal Sakti, the ruling coalition would be headed in the right direction.

Oct 10 is slated to be the official date for the launch of the party, with special VIP guest Datuk Seri Najib Razak officiating the ceremony at the Malaysian Agro Exposition Park in Serdang in a move which suggests that BN is not going to rely solely on past partners like MIC to garner support and votes.

Critics feel that MIC is slowly but surely fading into oblivion, with many Indians finding the party irrelevant to serve the needs of the community especially with the on-going political dominance of Samy Vellu.

Continuous support by Najib and BN for Makkal Sakti in the near future could also mean MIC losing more supporters, something which Dr Mahathir seems to agree with.

“The support for MIC has already been diluted,” said Dr Mahathir.

Samy Vellu was also not spared from another verbal bashing by the former Prime Minister.

When asked to comment on reports that Samy Vellu might be taking a break from his post as MIC president for two months, Dr Mahathir sarcastically replied that instead of taking a break for two months, Samy Vellu should consider taking 20 years off.

“The longer he (Samy) sits as MIC president, the more people are going to hate him. I myself had only been Prime Minister for 22 years, and there are some people who don’t like me. Samy has been there for more than 30 years.”

Deepavali Leave for school should be for one week

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(Malaysia Nanban) - Page 2

Deepavali Leave for school should be for one week. Why the discrimination?

Living in the shadow of Najib’s 1 Malaysia

by Tunku Abdul Aziz
Malaysian Insider

I was in Seoul last Monday to participate in the World Forum for Democratisation in Asia (Third Biennial Conference) on “Sustaining Democratisation in Asia: Challenges of Economic and Social Justice” with some 200 delegates from Asia and the United States.

The conference brought together people from diverse backgrounds and of all ages, to seek ways of strengthening, and arresting the rapidly declining state of democracy in their countries. These men and women, all with impeccable credentials as human rights advocates, shared many of the same democratic values that have inspired human beings through the ages, all over the world, to make great personal sacrifices against humanly impossible odds in the name of justice and freedom from the tyranny of state-sanctioned human rights abuses, such as we are subjected to in Malaysia regularly.

I spoke on the panel on “Citizen Participation and Political Accountability.” In the audience were participants from Indonesia, the US, India, Cambodia, Nepal, Singapore, Malaysia and Mongolia, among others.

I thought I was doing well, having made some rather important points on the need for citizens to take charge of their own destiny as freedom was far too important to be left to the tender mercies of politicians, many of whom were charlatans at best and untrustworthy to boot. I mentioned as an example how citizens’ active participation in the March 2008 general election in my country had succeeded in changing, albeit ever so slightly, the 50-year corrupt political landscape, a feat that was nothing short of miraculous given the corrupt and repressive environment against which they were fighting to change.

I must confess that I was somewhat surprised that interest in Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s “baggage” had extended beyond the shores of Malaysia. Blame the borderless cyber technology for this unwelcome attention. Before I could finish my final remark, I was stopped dead in my tracks by the personable Yale- and Princeton-educated Ms. Oyungerel Tsedevdamba, advisor to the President of Mongolia. She wanted to know, in the nicest possible way, why Malaysian citizens had voted for a person of Najib’s known reputation to assume the highest political office, and, she continued, was it true that in the Altantuya Shaariibuu trial, the Malaysian judiciary was acting improperly to protect Najib?

We do not, of course, have direct prime ministerial elections in Malaysia. I explained that the prime minister was elected by his party; Umno. It says more about the integrity of the party than perhaps the person it elected to high office. Now, I am not unused to being asked all kinds of questions in my years of public speaking, both at home and abroad, but this, about the murder trial of Altantuya threw me off balance. Ms Tsedevdamba was putting the proverbial cat among the pigeons. It caused a real flutter in my dovecot, no pun intended. My character and integrity would be put under close scrutiny, effectively on trial, and as in any trial, telling the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth would, I thought, be the best policy.

I am fiercely patriotic, proud of our many achievements in a number of important areas, but like many of you I often hang my head in utter shame and humiliation when I see the cynical manipulation of democratic principles by a government that seems to have lost its moral capital by developing an unethical and immoral political behaviour into a fine art form. To them who govern this country, the end would seem to justify the means.

In this respect, it is useful to remind ourselves what Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, when he was Prime Minister, used to proclaim, without a tinge of embarrassment, that we were a democracy because we held regular elections. It was not important to the emasculator (or perhaps constrictor is a more appropriate word in his case) of human rights that they might not always have been free and fair. What Dr Mahathir and his Umno friends have never appreciated, or deliberately failed to acknowledge, is the fact that democracy is not just about elections. It is what happens between elections that really is the point at issue. I hope Najib will not allow this grotesquely vintage Mahathir blind spot to rub off on him. It could lead to further electoral nightmares he can do without.

The “Umno-led by the nose Barisan Nasional” government has always been preoccupied more with the form rather than the substance. To them democracy is a product you could pick and choose as and when you like, much like buying a kilo of sugar over a supermarket counter, in the same way they buy votes by the thousands at party election time.

Democracy is a process that requires active citizen participation and direct involvement because it belongs to the people irrespective of race. They should, therefore, be free from the shackles of corrupt political and bureaucratic practices that have become embedded in many of our once proud national institutions but, which today, have become nothing more than the sordid tools of an unprincipled government. The people should be liberated from the clutches of unjust and undemocratic laws such as the ISA.

Don’t these Umno leaders see any contradiction between sending their own fellow citizens to indefinite detention without trial and celebrating Merdeka religiously at great public expense each year to mark the nation’s freedom from the injustice and degradation of alien rule? You cannot have 1 Malaysia without first dismantling those policies and systems that have done untold damage to the development of democracy in our society. These must be replaced by those that are consistent with the dictates and aspirations of a Malaysian Malaysia with all that this implies.

The end of the year is the season for overseas conferences. I will be speaking at three in the next six weeks and I wonder if the likes of the delectable Ms Tsedevdamba will be in the audience to plague and ply me with questions as I was in Seoul about the Najib-Altantuya nexus, the submarine and other arms contracts. Najib should have realised by now that his every word, gesture and action will be scrutinised and analysed by the people of this country. It is their right to know what their prime minister is up to in the public domain. It is the price he must pay willingly under our democratic system.

I suppose if my listeners ask me awkward questions about Najib, I will have to tell them that I am not, thank heavens, Najib’s keeper. I suppose, also, that is the price I pay for living in the shadow of Najib’s 1 Malaysia

Pro-Tem MIC Committee Finds Irregularities During MIC Election

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 26 (Bernama) -- The 'Pro-Tem MIC 2009 Election Irregularity Committee', set up by seven MIC members, wants a fresh party election to be held as it claims there were irregularities during the party election on Sept 12.

The secretary of the pro-tem committee, N. Saaran, said he had raised several issues in a letter of complaint sent to the chairman of the MIC Election Committee, Datuk K. Vijayanathan, including the abuse of power by MIC president Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu when the election was going on.

"We have come to (the) conclusion that the Election Committee that conducted the MIC general election was not independent, was not transparent. There were various irregularities that we have gathered.

"We actually sent notices to the Election Committee Chairman, we had requested for explanation why such irregularities had taken place," he told a news conference, here on Saturday.

Also present at the press conference were members of the pro-tem committee, including its chairman, P. Subramaniam who lost in the election for the post of vice-president.

Saaran claimed that the irregularities discovered at the election included Samy Vellu's cancellation of the ban on the use of handphones whereas Vijayanathan had issued a reminder to all delegates before the balloting.

"One of the delegates was caught using the handphone to take a photograph of the ballot paper, this was brought up by one of the candidates to the election committee, however no action had been taken," he claimed.

Subramaniam said other complaints raised with the MIC Election Committee Chairman in four letters sent on Sept 18, 23 and 25 were the actions of the candidates endorsed by Samy Vellu who had violated the rules against campaigning.

"Candidates were prohibited to campaign after 12.00 noon on Sept 11, but this rule was not followed by this so called official line-up, there were campaigns after 12.00 where there were campaigning in Sentul Curry House by the Youth, Wanita and Puteri MIC wings," he claimed.

"And not only that, on the election day, copies of a Tamil newspaper, Tamil Nesan, were distributed to all 1,400 delegates in the hall. In the paper, you could see a lot of campaigning by the official line-up, which was against the rule on campaigning," he said.

Subramaniam questioned why no action was taken whereas the MIC Election Committee Chairman had earlier issued a warning that any candidate caught campaigning after the time stipulated would automatically be disqualified from contesting.

He said his group was waiting for an explanation from Vijayanathan before taking further action.

Asked what action they would take if there was no change in the decision, he said they would then decide whether to remain in the MIC or join another party.

Gerakan Welcomes Murugiah To Join Party

SHAH ALAM, Sept 26 (Bernama) -- Gerakan would be happy to welcome Senator Datuk T. Murugiah, who was sacked as People's Progressive Party (PPP) supreme council member in May, as a member if he decides to join the Gerakan, said party vice-president A. Kohilan Pillay.

"We are more than happy to welcome a leader like Murugiah and his supporters if they are keen to join Gerakan and build up the party," he told Bernama when contacted on Saturday.

Kohilan said this when asked to comment on Murugiah's intention to cross over to a Barisan Nasional (BN) component party with 157,000 supporters by November, following the decision of the PPP disciplinary board expelling him in May for allegedly tarnishing the good name of the party and indulging in money politics.

The Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister's Department said yesterday he was waiting for the green light from the BN leadership before making his move.

Murugiah, who declined to name the party, said: "A BN leader, whose name I cannot disclose now, told me to wait for two months for a decision on the political future of my BN Supporters Club.

He, however, denied that he and his supporters would be joining the opposition though they had received offers from them.

Kohilan, who is also Selangor Gerakan state liaison chairman, said Murugiah and his supporters should not expect much from the party in terms of top political posts, if they were to join Gerakan.

Murugiah, in an immediate reaction, thanked Gerakan for the offer and said he had to get clearance from the BN top leadership for the offer.

"After getting the blessings from BN top leadership, I have to consult my 157,000 fellow supporters throughout the country (on the offer being made by Gerakan)," he said, adding he would keep his options open.

Murugiah said that he and his supporters would prefer joining a multiracial component party in BN, in line with the One Malaysia concept mooted by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.

He also said that he always had PPP close to his heart and was only disappointed with the leadership of party president, Datuk M. Kayveas.

Mahathir: If I were Isa... - Malaysiakini

Former Umno president Dr Mahathir Mohamad has a word of advice for ex-Umno vice-president Isa Samad - stay out of the Bagan Pinang polls.

"If I am Isa, I will urge the party not to make me the candidate. Then I will work hard to campaign for the chosen candidate. With that, it will boost his reputation," he said.

mahathir open house 260909 mahathir najib"But in Malaysia, such a culture does not exist," Mahathir told reporters, at the sidelines of his Hari Raya open house function at his residence in Seri Kembangan.

On the insistence of certain Umno grassroots that Isa be made a candidate, Mahathir said they did not consider the interest of the party as a whole.

"Well, they are very short sighted. They only see his (Isa's) interest and the interest of the 'bahagian' (division). But what about the interest of the party?

"If the party puts a candidate which is not clean, then the whole party would be condemned," he said.

He added though it was important for Umno to secure a win in Bagan Pinang, a tainted candidate would cause embarrassment for the party and the ruling Barisan Nasional.

NONEThe Teluk Kemang Umno division leadership is unanimously adamant that their boss Isa is picked as the candidate for Bagan Pinang, which falls under the Teluk Kemang constituency.

Traditionally, the party leadership considers a list of names submitted by the division. However, Teluk Kemang Umno submitted only Isa's name.

But critics, most notably Mahathir, are against this because Isa was found guilty by the Umno disciplinary board of vote-buying during the 2004 party polls. He was then the Federal Territories minister.

Thumbs up for Makkal Sakti

Meanwhile, Mahathir was also asked about Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak's scheduled appearance at the launching of the Malaysia Makkal Sakti Party (MMSP) on Oct 10, which he responded positively.

“There seem to be a lot of support for the formation of this party. I think it is a good thing because we don't want to lose the support of the Indians,” said Mahathir.

Asked if this would dilute BN's biggest Indian-based component party the MIC, the acerbic tongued statesman said: “Well, I think MIC's influence is already diluted”.

For the first time ever, the BN chair would be officiating the launch of a new party whose leadership is ironically made up of members of former Hindu Rights Action Force (Hindraf), a movement outlawed by the government.

mahathir open house 260909 mahathir fansObservers believe that the cozy ties between Najib and MMSP may eventually lead to the marginalisation of MIC, the BN coalition's third-largest component.

On MIC president S Samy Vellu's apparent plans to go on two months' leave to give his deputy a trial-run as acting president, Mahathir replied: “It should be extended to 20 years”.

“He has been president for 30 years. I stepped down after 22 years, and even then, not that many people hated me. But the longer he stays, the more people will hate him,” he added.

He was responding to a Malaysiakini report where Samy Vellu said he would take a two-month leave early next year so that his anointed successor G Palanivel can take over his presidential duties.

Samy Vellu has been under intense pressure to quit from Umno and from Utusan Malaysia - which is owned by the ruling party - particularly during the run-up to the MIC party elections a fortnight ago.

Newly weds centre of attraction


Mahathir was happy with the turnout at his open house and estimated an attendance of 10,000 people during the 10am to 1pm session. Doors were again open from 3pm to 5pm.

mahathir open house 260909Numerous political big guns were in attendance including Najib, Malacca chief minister Mohd Ali Rustam and former MIC deputy president S Subramaniam, who lost to Palanivel at the MIC polls two weeks ago.

The MIC leader brought along a garland and presented it to Mahathir.

Two guests who turned many heads were newlyweds Ng Vin Ping and his wife Chong Pei Nee who came to extend their Aidilfitri wishes to Mahathir and wife, Siti Hasmah Ali.

The couple's wedding reception was held at the Palace of Golden Horses, a stone's throw away from Mahathir's residence, and they decided to attend the open house function.

The pair waited patiently in the queue for 30 minutes - both dressed in all-white wedding garb - before finally getting to meet Mahathir (top photo).

“To the Chinese, today is a very ong (lucky) day to get married. Mahathir is our idol and we are very happy to get married and personally meet him,” said Ng, 37, who manages a pharmaceutical company in Shanghai.

“I greeted him and wished him a long life,” said Chong, 27, a nutritionist who works for the same company.

After accomplishing their mission, the happy couple left the venue and but not before a round of congratulatory applause from Mahathir's guests.