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Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Cikgu! Maniam bukan paria


Adik-adik sekalian,

Mulai tahun 2011, adik-adik yang belajar di Tingkatan Lima di Selangor, Putrajaya, Kuala Lumpur dan Negeri Sembilan (Zon Tengah) boleh berjalan sambil mendabik dada kerana adik-adik diiktiraf ‘bukan budak-budak lagi’ dan mampu membicarakan topik-topik yang menyentuh sensitiviti masyarakat pelbagai kaum di negara bertuah ini secara akademik, terbuka dan penuh rasional.

Hakikat yang boleh dipertikaikan tetapi tidak dapat dinafikan adalah bahawa sistem pendidikan di negara kita pada masa kini hanya lebih berjaya melahirkan ‘robot’ yang berkeupayaan tinggi untuk ‘makan bersuap’ dan menghafaz segala fakta dari buku panduan menjawab soalan peperiksaan sebelum dimuntahkan ke atas kertas jawapan di dewan peperiksaan, lalu muncul menjadi pelajar cemerlang dengan deretan ‘A’ serta menjadi kebanggaan ibu bapa, guru, sekolah, masyarakat, kaum, agama, nusa, bangsa dan negara.

Namun, kini, segalanya berubah sebaik sahaja novel Interlok edisi murid (DBP: 2010) diperkenalkan sebagai teks Komponen Sastera Dalam Mata Pelajaran Bahasa Malaysia (Komsas). Adik-adik di Zon Tengah kini diiktiraf sudah matang dan mampu berhujah secara rasional apabila berhadapan dengan kisah keluarga Seman, Cing Huat dan Maniam menerusi novel Interlok edisi murid.

(Maaf! Adik-adik di zon-zon lain mungkin perlu tunggu sepuluh tahun lagi sebelum diiktiraf sudah ‘matang’ dan ‘dewasa’.)

Adik-adik sekalian,

Saya faham bahawa adik-adik sibuk dengan pelbagai tugasan serta aktiviti kurikulum, kokurikulum dan tuisyen sehingga (mungkin) tidak sempat mengumpulkan maklumat secukupnya untuk mampu membincangkan novel Interlok edisi murid di kelas. (Manakala pelbagai versi sinopsis boleh dibaca menerusi pelbagai buku panduan yang sudah pun berada di pasaran.)

Jangan lupa bahawa Majlis Permuafakatan Persatuan Ibu Bapa dan Guru Nasional (PIBGN) pasti sudah menasihatkan para guru mengumpulkan maklumat tambahan di luar novel Interlok edisi murid untuk dikongsikan bersama para pelajar semasa perbincangan novel Interlok edisi murid di kelas.

Maka, bagi memastikan guru-guru yang penuh dedikasi, rela berkorban (terpaksa berkorban?) dan sanggup mengumpul bahan-bahan tambahan bagi menjayakan proses pengajaran dan pembelajaran (P&P) tidak kecewa melihat hanya ‘robot’ duduk menghadap mereka di bilik darjah, berikut sedikit maklumat berguna dan fakta sahih yang boleh adik-adik salin, cetak, fotokopi, berkongi pautan (link) di ruang siber serta sebarkan kepada rakan-rakan pelbagai kaum di Zon Tengah.

Sikap proaktif, inovatif

Adik-adik sekalian,

Sebaik sahaja guru subjek Bahasa Malaysia (ulang: Bahasa Malaysia) mula bercakap mengenai watak Maniam, ‘si paria dari Kerala’, terus angkat tangan dan tegaskan dengan berani:

“Cikgu! Maniam bukan paria.”

Saya percaya guru anda yang penuh dedikasi dan berpegang teguh pada etika profesion perguruan serta matlamat ‘mengajar murid tentang erti penyatuan dan perpaduan seperti konsep 1Malaysia yang diilhamkan oleh Perdana Menteri Najib Tun Razak’ (petikan blurb novel Interlok edisi murid) akan memuji sikap ‘proaktif, inovatif dan kreatif’ yang anda tunjukkan.

Guru anda mungkin menjemput anda ke hadapan kelas untuk menerangkan apa yang anda maksudkan dengan kata-kata ‘Maniam bukan paria’. Malah, siapa tahu, guru berkenaan akan menarik nafas lega dan melafazkan syukur kerana sekurang-kurangnya untuk beberapa minit, beliau tidak perlu bercakap kepada dinding-dinding di bilik darjah!

Adik-adik sekalian,

Dalam keadaan sedemikian, ketepikan sebentar sentimen perkauman (yang sebenarnya sentiasa dipupuk dan dibajai secara berterusan oleh pihak tertentu), lalu berhujahlah secara rasional dan matang berdasarkan fakta-fakta berikut:

Cikgu! Maniam bukan paria kerana di halaman 215 novel Interlok edisi murid dijelaskan bahawa dia dan keluarganya tidak makan daging lembu. Mengikut fakta yang boleh dibuktikan oleh pakar budaya India seperti pensyarah di Jabatan Pengajian India, Universiti Malaya (UM), Profesor Dr Rajantheran Muniandy, ‘paria’ merujuk kepada golongan yang makan daging lembu. Maka, Maniam bukan paria.

Cikgu! Maniam bukan paria kerana di halaman 214-215 novel Interlok edisi murid disebut bahawa dia memiliki seekor lembu jantan yang digunakan untuk mengambil upah membajak sawah milik orang lain. Keluarga yang mampu memiliki lembu dianggap ‘mewah’ dan ‘bertuah’ dalam budaya India, apatah lagi di negara India pada tahun 1910 di mana kisah dalam novel ini berlaku. Mustahil seorang paria mampu hidup se‘mewah’ itu. Maka, Maniam bukan paria.

Cikgu! Maniam bukan paria kerana di halaman 211 novel Interlok edisi murid dinyatakan bahawa ‘Maniam berangkat atas kemahuan sendiri’ iaitu pasti sahaja merujuk kepada Sistem Kemasukan Buruh Bebas yang ‘dilaksanakan pada peringkat awal pemerintahan British di Taman Melayu’ seperti dijelaskan dalam buku Pengajian Malaysia (2002) yang dijadikan buku rujukan di beberapa institusi pengajian tinggi swasta (IPTS) seluruh negara (termasuk Semenanjung Malaysia).

Mulai tahun 1859, kemasukan buruh dari India menerusi sistem ini ‘terbantut’ kerana tambang terlalu tinggi berikutan penguatkuasaan Undang-undang Penumpang. Jadi, jika Maniam masih mampu datang ke Pulau Pinang menerusi Sistem Kemasukan Buruh Bebas pada Julai 1910, tentu dia bukan paria yang tidak ada duit. Malah, secara rasional, mustahil ada orang di desanya yang sanggup memberi pinjaman pada jumlah terlalu tinggi kepada seorang paria untuk pergi ke Malaya ‘atas kemahuan sendiri’ tanpa sebarang jaminan kerja. Maka, Maniam bukan paria.

Cikgu! Maniam bukan paria kerana saya mengikuti, membaca dan memahami hujah-hujah akademik serta dalil-dalil sah yang dikemukakan Kumpulan Sasterawan Kavyan (Kavyan) dari semasa ke semasa di blog. Saya lakukan demikian kerana saya faham bahawa beban kerja dan tugas cikgu bukannya mudah, apatah lagi kini dengan kontroversi Interlok edisi murid yang belum selesai.

Saya sarankan cikgu meminta kebenaran daripada pengetua kita – yang amat penyayang dan tidak mengamalkan sebarang bentuk prejudis perkauman – supaya menjemput wakil Kavyan datang ke sekolah dan memberikan taklimat khas percuma (ulang: percuma) mengenai novel Interlok edisi murid secara akademik dan intelektual demi manfaat para pelajar, serta demi membantu kami (yang merupakan pemimpin masa depan) benar-benar menjadi lebih ‘matang’ dan ‘dewasa’ serta mampu berhujah secara rasional dan berbobot, seperti yang diharapkan Perdana Menteri Najib Tun Razak yang amat kita cintai dan kasihi.

Adik-adik sekalian,

Guru subjek Bahasa Malaysia yang mengajar Komsas pasti akan memanjangkan syukur kerana bertuah mendapat sekumpulan pelajar pelbagai kaum yang proaktif, inovatif dan kreatif seperti anda.

Atau sekurang-kurangnya, beliau boleh bersyukur kerana semasa taklimat khas percuma dijalankan wakil Kavyan nanti, guru berkenaan boleh membereskan kerja-kerja hakiki yang masih bertimbun-timbun di atas meja di bilik guru.

Uthaya Sankar SB berpengalaman mengajar subjek Bahasa Malaysia, Pendidikan Moral dan Pengajian Malaysia di beberapa kolej swasta pada 1999-2007. Catatan beliau berhubung pelbagai isu kecil boleh dibaca di www.uthayasb.blogspot.com

Egypt outpouring

Cairo, Egypt (CNN) -- Thousands of protesters spilled into the streets of Egypt on Tuesday, an unprecedented display of anti-government rage inspired in part by the tumult in the nearby North African nation of Tunisia.

Two people died in clashes between the protesters and police, according to an Interior Ministry statement. One demonstrator was killed by tear gas in the eastern city of Suez, while one policeman was killed in Cairo by rock-throwing protesters, it said. Thirty-six police officers were reported injured.

Throngs in the sprawling capital city marched from the huge Tahrir Square in Cairo toward the parliament building, according to CNN reporters on the scene.

Demonstrators threw rocks at police and police hurled rocks back. Tear-gas canisters were shot at demonstrators and the protesters threw them back.

Protest organizers said they hope to capture the regional momentum for political change set by Tunisians, who 10 days ago forced the collapse of Zine El Abidine Ben Ali's 23-year rule.

The grievances were foreshadowed by several Egyptians who set themselves or tried to set themselves on fire earlier this month, mirroring the self-immolation of a Tunisian man whose action spurred the uprising there.

The Tunisian uprising was the most successful revolt in the region since 1979, but it is anybody's guess whether uprisings will spread to other Arabic-speaking lands.

Juan Cole, a Middle East historian at the University of Michigan, says Tunisia is different from other Arab nations. Tunisia, he said, is the "most secular country in the Arab world." Its traditions have favored women's rights, and its Islamist influence is negligible.

The United States and other governments are monitoring the demonstrations in Cairo and elsewhere closely. U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton urged all people to "exercise restraint" and supported "the fundamental right of expression and assembly for all people."

"But our assessment is that the Egyptian government is stable and is looking for ways to respond to the legitimate needs and interests of the Egyptian people," she said.

To highlight the role of police corruption, the protest organizers in Egypt picked January 25 -- Police Day and a national holiday -- to hold protests.

The protests started off small, but they grew as people came to the center of the city from bridges over the Nile River.

Police were restrained and at times were seemingly outnumbered by the protesters, who sang the national anthem and inched forward to express their ire toward the government.

Witnesses said large groups of plain-clothes police were heading to Tahrir Square.

Protesters had been expressing their anger over the rising cost of living, failed economic policies and corruption, but all those concerns were distilled into one overriding demand -- the resignation of President Hosni Mubarak, in power for three decades.

The outpouring included young and old, Christians and Muslims, students, workers and business people.

"We breathe corruption in the air," said one demonstrator, who along with others said their children have no future.

At its peak there were perhaps 15,000 to 20,000 people in Tahrir Square, but that crowd later dwindled to about 5,000 to 8,000. The main road in front of parliament, Qasr Al-Aini, was closed to traffic. The square is two blocks from parliament.

"Egyptians have the right to express themselves," said Foreign Ministry spokesman Hossam Zaki, commenting on the protests.

The Interior Ministry called on demonstrators to follow the law and avoid threatening the safety of bystanders, the public and private property.

Social media has been all-important in mobilizing and organizing protests. But bloggers and others in Egypt reported problems with electronic communication later in the day. Activists can't access their cell phones or text messages, and opposition websites can't be accessed. Twitter was blocked in Egypt around 11 a.m. ET, the company said.

There were other demonstrations in Cairo suburbs of Heliopolis, Shubra Al-Khaima, Muhandasin and Dar Al-Salam.

One man said Egypt is not Tunisia, it's Romania under Nicolae Ceausescu, a reference to the late and much-reviled communist leader.

The Front to Defend Egypt Protesters, an alliance of lawyers who helped organize the events, said about 200 demonstrators were in the southern city of Aswan, 2,000 in the eastern city of Ismailiya, and about 3,000 in the northern city of Mahallah.

The Egyptian government did not issue permits for Tuesday's planned protests.

In an interview released Tuesday with state-run al-Ahram newspaper, Interior Minister Habib Adly warned that "the security agencies are able to stop any attempt to attend" the demonstrations and called the efforts of the "youth staging street protests ineffective."

By early Tuesday morning, more than 90,000 people throughout the country had pledged to participate in the Facebook event "We Are All Khaled Said," named after an Alexandria activist who was allegedly beaten to death by police.

The Facebook group demands raising the minimum wage, firing the interior minister, creating two-term presidential term limits and scrapping existing emergency laws that the group says "resulted in police control" over the people and the nation.

Amnesty International released a statement Monday "urging the Egyptian authorities not to crack down" on the planned nationwide demonstration.

The banned Muslim Brotherhood, the biggest organized opposition to Mubarak's regime, had stated it would not have an official presence at Tuesday's protests, but some of its members "have reportedly been summoned and threatened with arrest and detention" if they attend and protest, Amnesty International said.

Opposition leader and Nobel Peace laureate Mohamed ElBaradei posted statements supporting the protests on his Twitter account.

He also created a video statement addressing policemen that was released Monday on YouTube.

"I sympathize with you because sometimes you are asked to do things that you do not want to do," ElBaradei said.

"One day, I hope that you will regain your role as the protectors of the people; rather than protectors of ... fraud elections. I am sure that every one of you deep inside is looking forward to the day that his role will again be with the people and a part of them, rather than against them," he said.

Public sentiment against state security forces has grown recently with alleged videos of police brutality shown on the internet. A recent report from Human Rights Watch said the problem is "epidemic," and "in most cases, officials torture detainees to obtain information and coerce confessions, occasionally leading to death in custody."

Some other human rights groups, such as the Arabic Network for Human Rights, have drawn a comparison between Egypt and Tunisia under Ben Ali, in terms of the level of government corruption and police brutality.

Adly, the Egyptian interior minister, dismissed any such comparisons, calling it "propaganda" that had been rejected by politicians as "intellectual immaturity."

But one woman, identified only as Nahla, who planned to attend the Tuesday protests, disagreed. She wrote in an online post, "I hope the [Tunisia-style] revolution will be taught in history. And that Egyptians will learn in school later about the January 25th revolution."

What could have led to Krishnan's death?

'What many don't understand is that autopsies are done to determine the cause of death, not events leading to death.'

Krishnan's family rejects 2nd autopsy result

Pemerhati: The main question here is, can you get a pathologist in Malaysia who would dare give an opinion that is truthful and that exposes the wrongdoing by the enforcement agencies?

The happenings at the A Kugan, Teoh Beng Hock and Anwar Ibrahim's cases suggest that it is most unlikely. In Kugan's case, we saw how the authorities tried to discredit evidence which showed that Kugan died from police injuries, by getting several pathologists to contradict him.

In Teoh's case, they had probably "turned over" and scared the expatriate pathologist from a developing country, and used him to assist a local pathologist. We only learnt of their shoddy work after the Thai pathologist, Dr Pornthip Rajasunand, carried out her examination.

In Anwar's sodomy case, the bizarre behaviour of the doctors in not referring to their notes indicates strong pressure is being applied on them by PM Najib Abdul Razak and Umno. As things stand now, Najib and BN can intimidate any public official they like and make them do whatever they want.

P Dev Anand Pillai: If only the doctors are truthful, the police will be caught but unfortunately, do you think the doctor is going to write the truth? The medical profession has been bastardised and prostituted. All we have now are qualified automatons who are only capable of taking orders.

So poor Indian folks, beware, the police can catch and kill and no one can question them. To all Indian boys out there, learn a skill, learn some English and get the hell out of Malaysia. Once there, bring the rest of the family.

Tired: The problem with some people is that they only want to believe and accept something which concurs with their belief. In this case, they are convinced this guy has been murdered, so the autopsy must support their conviction.

What many don't understand is that autopsies are done to determine the cause of death, not events leading to death. So, the family must accept that he died of ulcer, what they can pursue is whether the alleged beatings and lack of treatment have contributed or hastened Krishnan's demise.

There is really no need to disparage, curse, malign and ridicule the pathologist, who is only doing his job, which is to determine the cause of death and nothing else.

Lonestar: The direct cause of death could well be bleeding gastric ulcer. But in this day and age, not many individuals die from this cause if adequate and prompt and proper treatment is provided. And such treatment is easily available in Malaysia.
What could have contributed to Krishnan's death in custody could most likely be the lack of the just mentioned. Did the alleged beating have contributed to it?
Were his complaints related to the bleeding ulcer not given prompt and proper attention? Was he deprived of adequate medical attention? Questions, questions, questions needing answers.

Zimbobwe: If Krishnan was a long-time sufferer from gastritis and was prone to bleeding ulcers, getting kicked around and beaten by a gang of uniformed Orcs certainly wouldn't have helped. In fact, it's probably what led to his death. Even if the clinical cause of death was bleeding gastric ulcers, what exacerbated his condition and turned it lethal must be taken into account.

ACR: There is an astounding comment here suggesting that "autopsies are done to determine cause of death, not events leading to death". So we are to believe that stomach ulcers kill and the bruises on Krishnan's body was there but had nothing to do with his death.

We are expected to believe this since this country has government agencies that postulate dying by self-strangulation for example. Aren't we all proud of the logic and brilliance of all these government institutions.

John Noel Bright: In most third world countries the marginalised and the minorities will never get justice. It is sad but it is a fact. Only civilised societies could bring about changes and the needed care for this group. In Malaysia, the reality is that, that level has not been reached.

Neither the opposition nor the ruling party are made up of people with conscience. They are are only there for the votes and that's all.

Changeagent: Stomach ulcers? I'm surprised that they didn't conclude that the victim died from kicking himself in the stomach.
Isa@1penyu: If PAS wants to hit below the belt, BN, too, can dig up a lot of things on everyone in PAS. Tell us what PAS has done right rather than harping on personal weaknesses.

PAS, we want to listen to what you have in store if we vote for you, not hitting BN or its candidate. Be a party with strong principles, not like DAP and PKR followers. We liked PAS more when you stood your ground on Islam.

Ghkok: When district officers make questionable decisions about people's land, it is definitely not a "small matter". It is a question of integrity and an issue of judgement. It tells a lot about a person's character in relation to a position of authority.

It is definitely a question that requires the candidate for the post of state assemblyperson to provide clear answers, and not just shrug it off and say "it's the court's decision".

This issue is very relevant and PAS has rightly brought it up because it has everything to do with a person's ability and character to hold a position of authority, whereas the issue of whether the person wears gloves to shake hands is merely symbolic, and less to do with decision-making ability and integrity.

Will the government ever learn from its mistakes?


1Malaysia is a branding that is nothing but a political lie and smacks of hypocrisy. The truth is that Najib Tun Razak himself has no understanding of what truly constitutes 1Malaysia.

What he does know very well is that he is desperate to reign for as many years as he possibly can as the prime minister of this country.

This claim is made on the basis of the recent news concerning a Sikh teenage boy, Basant Singh, who was attending the national service training at its training camp at Sungai Bakap in Penang.

It is common knowledge that the steel Sikh bangle and their long hair are a must wear according to their religion. As such, it was disgusting to learn about how this Sikh boy’s hair was cut and that too in a cowardly manner, when he was asleep.

Did Najib not know about the fact the Sikh males wear turbans and there is no question of them cutting their hair as it is prohibited by their religion? Was there no provision made to accommodate the Sikh participants’ sensitivities at the training camp?

Malaysia boasts of the largest Sikh community in South Asia, more than 60,000. In spite of that, the Sikh religion remains unknown to many Malaysians who cannot differentiate between a Sikh and a Bengali.

In Basant Singh’s case, cutting the boy’s hair is nothing less than blasphemy. Who now will take responsibility for this ignorant show of authority? While the National Service and Training Department owes the Sikh community a public apology, Najib too must not be spared – he must come out and apologise for the display of such insensitivity.

If there is no apology from Najib, it confirms that his 1Malaysia deserves no place in the heart of the rakyat, for it is nothing but a money-spinning strategy to win votes and oust the opposition, which in due time can perform better in administering the country.

When it was the issue of the use of the word ‘Allah’, the Muslims were ready to pounce of the non-Malays over this issue. And when it concerned the Malay rights issue accorded under Article 153 by the Federal Constitution, the Muslims were again ready to slam those who questioned their privileges.

Thankfully, the Sikh community is a respected and civilised one and believes in solving issues without trespassing decency; still this is not to be taken for granted by the other races in trampling the rights and ‘privileges’ of the Sikhs.

Najib bribes in the open

Once the truth has been swallowed that in reality the concept of 1Malaysia does not exist, it will make it easier for the voters, especially the Indian voters to make the informed decision of whom to vote for.

Speaking of votes, while the federal government is hoodwinking people into believing it is dead against corruption, the not savvy leader in Najib failed to show a good example when he recently openly bribed the Indians, and that too, during the auspicious event of Thaipusam.

During his visit to the Subramaniya Swami Devasthanam Temple in Sungai Petani, Kedah, Najib shamelessly bribed the Indians there when he said Thaipusam would be announced a public holiday in Kedah should Barisan Nasional win the 13th general election.

Further bribe was put forward when Najib said that the government would (sic) consider applications for financial aid to upgrade the temple (read if only BN wins the next general election, otherwise no go for Indian places of worship).

Indeed, Najib through his foolishness and shamelessness is living evidence that politics is not a game the wise choose to play. If this was not insulting enough, during his visit to Batu Caves on Thaipusam day, Najib played to the gallery when he declared a RM10 million cable car project for Batu Caves and which will be ready next year.

More bribe was given when he said the government had allocated RM6.9 million for the Batu Caves beautification and landscaping programme and also the construction of a new block for the SJK (T) Batu Caves, the latter which was completed last month.

Perhaps the cable car idea is Najib’s shortcut to amass as many Indian supporters-cum-voters as possible. But then, climbing up the 272 steps of the Batu Caves temple has no substitute, for in doing so, one takes on many challenges i.e.physically, mentally and spiritually. Yes, something to ferry the old folks and the disabled people up the steps would be much welcome instead, the intion being noble and not hidden.

And with all the racial discord facing Malaysians, Najib once again went into denial by rambling “if we are able to celebrate diversity, we have reached the ultimate in terms of accepting diversity as a source of strength for our country.” This was at Batu Caves.

In Sungai Petani, Najib said the freedom of religion practiced in the country proved the government is fair to all. He added the government’s stand in maintaining racial and religious harmony in the country could be seen clearly through the 1Malaysia concept which is based on unity. He said Malaysians would not be so narrow minded to reject the 1Malaysia concept, alluding to the Selangor state government’s move to bar the use of the 1Malaysia logos.

Now, what does the Indian community have to say to this show of disrespect by Najib, who walks into the temple ground and offers bribe to the Indians before openly turning the religious event into his political propaganda? Or have the Indians been quickly been bought over by the ‘powers that be’ that they have become numb to such display of arrogance and insensitivity?

No one religion is superior

It is getting tired to read and hear Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Jamil Khir Baharom cautioning the non-Malays on being sensitive to the Malays. The May 13, 1969 racial outburst came and went and yet politicians have not learned to appreciate and cherish unity.

Religious issues are sensitive and this post-May 13, 1969 is a bitter lesson the ‘powers that be’ have failed to learn. Religions have been segregated into superior and dominant, all at the expense of peace and unity in the country.

There is only one concern, that Islam remains the ‘premier’ religion at all costs. If this was not true, then the concern shown over the issue concerning Basant Singh would have ‘troubled’ just about everyone.

It was just last year January when an uproar by the Muslims over the court declaration that the Christians can use the word ‘Allah’ proved that the unity Malaysians were once so proud of had reached an all-time low.

The court’s decision made many a Muslim unhappy resulting in churches and a gurdwara (Sikh temple) being burned and vandalised. Muslim preachers were abusing the Friday sermons to object to the court’s verdict.

One year later, has anything really changed for the better? Has Malaysia become a united nation, truly?

If looking back at the insult and humiliation of September 2009 where some 50 Muslims stomped and spat at the severed head of a cow to display their anger over the construction of a Hindu temple in their neighbourhood in Section 23, Shah Alam, the answer is definitely not.

What happened to the sensitivity of these group of people, knowing fully well that the cow is regarded as a scared animal by the Hindus.

That was painfully bad enough, but when the demonstrators barked that their neighbourhood had a 90 per cent Muslim population and building a temple was inappropriate, this again revealed how shallow Malaysians have become in their acceptance and tolerance of other faiths.

That other religions are not significant was evident when protest honcho Ibrahim Sabri shouted: “If there is blood, you (the government) will be responsible. I challenge the Selangor government leaders to go on with the temple construction. I guarantee bloodshed and racial tension.”

So much for 1Malaysia. Fellow ‘leader’ Mohammad Zurit Ramli had said a temple would disturb Muslim practices.

“The temple will disrupt our daily activities like prayers. We cannot concentrate with the sounds coming from the temple,” was how Mohammad Zurit showed off his insensitivity towards practices of the other religions.

Najib’s ministers’ lack courtesy

In the Basant Singh case, the National Service and Training Department had no decency in tendering an apology to the boy and his family.

Likewise, nor did ministers holding portfolios affecting the rakyat have the courtesy to express any remorse.

The Women, Family and Community Development Minister Shahrizat Jalil showed no interest to offer help and neither did Information, Communications and Culture Minister Rais Yatim who is busy promoting Najib’s 1Malaysia find it worth his while to chide the National Service and Training Department over its carelessness in allowing such an incident to take place.

Even minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Dr Koh Tsu Koon has shown no interest in admonishing the National Service Department. It is a paradox that while Koh has been made in charge of unity and performance management, he failed to shine in fulfilling his responsibility in helping with the Basant Singh case.

And since Koh has been given the task of handling Najib’s Government Transformation Programme (GTP), which comprises monitoring the performance of ministries and six national key result areas (NKRAs) through Key Performance Indicators (KPIs), only time will tell whether he can do a sincere assessment of the ministries’ performances.

As for Rais he will have to work harder to educate the rakyat about the culture and religious significance involving the Sikh community.

After all, it is certainly related to the 1Malaysia propaganda he is so zealously propagating.

In Koh’s case, his never-ending habit of playing safe to appease his political masters has proven his undoing in the last general election.

The only minister expressing anger instead was Defence Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi who promised strict action against the culprit.

He said if an individual was found guilty, he must apologise to the boy’s family and the National Service and Training Department. It is an irony that amidst his concern, Ahmad Zahid did not find it necessary to chide the National Service Department, demanding that it apologise to Basant and his family.

Looking at the reaction of these ministers, hypothetically, if a Muslim child was wronged, what would their reaction be, silence or an uproar demanding justice? Why was National Service and Training Department director-general Abdul Hadi Awang Kechik not rebuked for his indifference over this issue, conveniently passing the buck to the police?

All Abdul Hadi could say was that the camp commandment had been told to meet Basant’s parents to discuss if the boy wanted to switch camps or defer the training. Now, what good would either do as the damage has already been done!

It is said unity in diversity is what leads to peace and acceptance. But when it took the MIC chief G Palanivel to urge the National Service and Training Department to apology to the Sikh community over the Basant Singh episode, what unity is Najib going around bragging?

Abdul Hadi was not the least regretful that such an incident happened under his watch and had further marred the already-maligned National Service image.

Since its inception in 2003, the National Service has been besieged with a host of problems, including reports of rape, bullying, death of participants and the dirty conditions of the camps which had led to health problems like food poisoning.

Will the federal government ever learn from its mistakes?

PKR: Rosmah rude for defending NS Sikh boy’s haircut


PETALING JAYA: PKR has slammed self-styled ‘first lady’ Rosmah Mansor for defending the National Service (NS) programme over the Sikh haircut issue.

“Rosmah’s defence of the Sikh boy’s haircut issue shows her rudeness and insensitivity towards religion,” said Ampang MP Zuraida Kamarudin, who is also the PKR women’s wing chief, in a press statement.

She added that Rosmah had no ‘locus standi’ to defend the NS programme because of her non-position within the federal government, and that the investigation was still ongoing.

The accusation came after Sikh NS trainee Basant Singh’s metre-long hair was cut by 60cm while he was sleeping in a Penang camp last week.

Despite the public outcry and the promise of an investigation by Defence Minister Zahid Hamidi, Rosmah came out in defence of the NS programme.

The PM’s wife said that parents were more confident of the NS, and that the programme had endured many trials during its implementation.

Zuraida also panned Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak for his lack of control over his wife, calling him a “coward”.

“By condoning and defending each wrong move by his wife, the PM has shown his weakness. It has opened criticisms that this country is being ruled by Queen control,” she said.

“This perception is very embarrassing and shows that the PM is a coward and has failed to keep his wife in check.”

The Ampang MP also said that the prime minister should step in to control his wife from wasting the taxpayers’ money, and embarrassing the country in the process.

Technical glitch blamed on late payment


PETALING JAYA: A technical glitch between the Federal Territories Welfare Department and the bank is holding up the distribution of the disabled workers allowance.

A senior official, who claimed anonymity, did not elaborate on the technical issue but said the department was sorting out the matter with the bank.

“We are checking the recipients’ details manually as the bank only provided their account number. This is what is causing the delay,” the official said, adding that the problem was confined to Federal Territories.

Yesterday, several working disabled people voiced their frustration at not receiving their monthly financial aid worth RM300 from the welfare department since December.

They also criticised the department for not informing them of the delay, causing much financial difficulty to their families.

When asked how soon the outstanding payments will be disbursed, the official said the department would clear the payments for January soon.

“As for the December payment, we have submitted the paperworks to the director-general. We are waiting to get his approval to disburse the funds,” he said.

The official urged those who had not received their payments to inform the nearest welfare department office to speed up the process.

“Just submit your name and MyKad number. We will help to get the money as soon as possible,” he said.

When asked about payments being redirected to the treasury when not collected on time, the official said it was because the money was put under a “floating system”.

“The fund is not credit to their accounts. Therefore, if the recipient does not collect it within 21 days, the money will be channelled back to the treasury,” said the official.

However, the recipients can apply to get funds back from the welfare department.

“After application, the disabled can get back their uncollected sum within two months,” he said.

Pakatan vocal, not silent on Interlok


PETALING JAYA: Klang MP Charles Santiago today said that Pakatan Rakyat leaders have been very vocal in their criticism of the Interlok novel.

He said that several Pakatan leaders,including himself, had come out openly to urge the government to retract the book from schools.

“In Tenang recently, Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim had said that the book was not suitable for schools,” Santiago told FMT, denying reports that Pakatan leaders were keeping mum on the Interlok controversy.

The Interlok novel, penned by national laureate Abdullah Hussain, was introduced as a component for the Malay literature subject for Form Five students this year.

Earlier, Hindraf Makkal Sakthi chairman, P Waythamoorthy, criticised Pakatan leaders for keeping quiet over the controversial novel, saying that their silence would not help the Indian community.

The Hindraf supremo also expressed dissatisfaction over Anwar’s claims on Jan 11 that the novel did not contain racist elements.

Santiago said that Pakatan had pointed out to the government that the novel not only demean the Indian community, but also the Chinese.

“It is written in the book that the Chinese would sell off their baby girls. This is racial stereotyping,” he said.

With the Tenang by-election looming over the horizon, Santiago said that the Interlok issue would be hot topic in the constituency, especially with the Indian community.

“Removing the word ‘pariah’ alone will not solve the problem as the book contains other racially prejudiced content, such as insinuating that all Indian men beat their wives.

“The book must be withdrawn from schools,” he said.

Baradan and MCA insulted His Majesty the Agong’s aunty



Are Baradan Kuppusamy, The Star and MCA saying that the Agong’s aunty is stupid? Let me hear it loud and clear. Is the Agong’s aunty stupid for refusing to shake the hands of men unless properly 'insulated'?
THE CORRIDORS OF POWER
Raja Petra Kamarudin
Read what Baradan Kuppusamy said in his piece below titled ‘Inconvenient marriage failing’, which was published in the MCA-owned newspaper, The Star, today. Note that MCA is regarded as an Umno running dog and which has now openly declared war not only on Islamic values, but on old traditional Malay values as well, and mocked them as stupid.
They can’t find any fault with the PAS candidate for the Tenang by-election so they are picking on just one ‘flaw’. And that so-called flaw is: she will not shake hands with a man unless properly ‘insulated’ with a glove or selendang.
Baradum, who I suppose is a Hindu Indian, must search his own roots and tell us whether it is Hindu or Indian culture/custom to shake hands, especially between men and women. In Thailand they do not normally shake hands either. They greet each other with Namaste.
This is what they say about Namaste:
Namaste is a common spoken greeting or salutation originating from India. It is a customary greeting when individuals meet, and a salutation upon their parting. Younger persons usually initiate the exchange with their elders. Initiating the exchange is seen as a sign of respect in other hierarchical settings. It is the common greeting in Nepal as well.
When spoken to another person, it is commonly accompanied by a slight bow made with hands pressed together, palms touching and fingers pointed upwards, in front of the chest. This gesture, called Añjali Mudrā (or Pranamasana), can also be performed wordlessly and carries the same meaning.
Namaste is not only done by Hindus in India but by Buddhists in Thailand as well. For all intents and purposes, shaking hands is a very western practice and not practiced by eastern people.
So what is the big deal about women refusing to shake the hands of men, especially those who may be strangers?
If Baradan Kuppusamy, The Star and MCA want to make this an issue then they should whack His Majesty the Agong's aunty as well. The Agong’s aunty also refuses to shake the hands of men unless she is properly ‘insulated’. If the PAS candidate for Tenang is stupid then the Agong’s aunty is also stupid.
Are Baradan Kuppusamy, The Star and MCA saying that the Agong’s aunty is stupid? Let me hear it loud and clear. Is the Agong’s aunty stupid for refusing to shake the hands of men unless properly 'insulated'?
Again, Baradan Kuppusamy, The Star and MCA, let me hear it loud and clear? Is the Agong’s aunty stupid for refusing to shake the hands of men unless properly 'insulated'?
*******************************************
Inconvenient marriage failing
By Baradan Kuppusamy
Increasingly the PAS-DAP alliance is fraying because not only are they at opposite ends of the pole but each is having difficulties justifying the other to the bemused electorate.
THE DAP is trapped in the unenviable position of not just supporting but also justifying some of the fundamentalist excesses of its ally PAS.
The party is trying hard and often failing to find a balance between its desire to see more Islam in daily life on one hand and on the other, win the support of non-Muslims without which it can’t rule the country.
It is an old dilemma that has returned to haunt both the DAP and PAS and evident two days into the Tenang by-election where PAS is preaching an Islamic state to Felda settlers but showing a more benign face to urban Chinese voters.
PAS and DAP are also on the defensive explaining why their candidate, former teacher Normala Sudirman, refuses to shake hands with voters and wears gloves.
The DAP is also outdoing itself presenting Normala to Chinese voters in a red coloured cheongsam complete with a red headscarf and decorated with calligraphy in keeping with the Chinese New Year theme.
They distribute leaflets with the word “change” in Mandarin and helped her meet hawkers, patrons and residents in Chinese majority areas like Labis and Tenang town.
While some hawkers and residents are upset and feel insulted that Normala does not shake hands and sometimes wears gloves, others try to be more understanding, saying this has to do with her religion or probably a strict Islamic upbringing.
But the issue has unexpectedly sparked a raging debate both in Tenang and outside and on cyberspace and probably could have an impact on voter sentiment.
Although the DAP and PAS dismiss the issue as “petty” and urged voters to look at the bigger picture, others say the issue is an example of the kind of conservatism that has no place in a moderate and secular society like Malaysia.
Each time Barisan raises the issue of PAS’ conservatism, it puts DAP on the defensive to explain and justify the excesses of its partner.
The list of items DAP has to swallow to keep PAS happy is getting longer by the month – from gender segregation in Kedah to grappling with PAS demands to cancel concerts to wanting to ban the sale of alcohol in Shah Alam and even demands that jawi should be bigger than rumi — romanised Bahasa Malaysia - on signboards.
PAS and DAP were political cats and dogs for a long time but under the deal hatched by PKR leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim in 2008, both parties sunk their differences to work together and benefited with the DAP throwing its Chinese weight to PAS and vice-versa.
Many PAS leaders would have been defeated if not for Chinese voter support and likewise many DAP leaders saw their winning majorities hit the roof because of support from PAS members.
But that marriage of convenience, which also hugely benefited the PKR, comes with a price and the cost for DAP is probably the highest because the alliance with PAS catches it like a beached fish struggling for oxygen.
On one hand the DAP defends a secular society but on the other hand it advances PAS goals for greater Islamisation.
The DAP’s strategy to overcome this fundamental contradiction is to proverbially, run with the hare and hunt with the hound.
The DAP lets party chairman Karpal Singh openly and vociferously disagree with PAS and its goals but quietly works with the party allowing both to advance their contrary political aims.
One desires a fair, just and secular society while the other has the same dream but entirely based on Islam.
Nowhere is the fundamental differences between them more evident than in the spate of by-elections that were fought and lost by PAS.
The same contradictions are evident in the latest battle in Tenang where PAS’ fundamentalist rhetoric has easily surfaced in the party’s bitter struggle to win crucial Felda votes and gain a upper hand over Umno.
The party lost the Malay heartland seat of Galas in Kelantan that saw young Malays, put off by PAS’ rigid Islamic rhetoric, and together with urban Chinese, voted for Barisan Nasional.
Similarly in Felda Tenang, PAS openly espoused Islamic theocracy, hudud laws and raised the kafir mengkafir (infidel) issue that had dominated the party’s rhetoric in the 1980s.
Under this now resurrected theme it is a sin for Malays to vote for Umno because of Umno’s co-operation with non-Muslims.
But this PAS claim cannot hold water because of the party’s own cooperation with DAP.
Increasingly the PAS-DAP alliance is fraying because not only are they at opposite ends of the pole but each is having difficulties justifying the other to the bemused electorate.
To the PAS hardcore, Karpal Singh’s constant reminder that Malaysia is secular is a major roadblock while for the DAP the excesses of PAS – from banning concerts, mini-skirts, alcohol to supporting gender segregation and hudud laws – are all increasingly difficult to defend or justify.
No matter how innocent and harmless that refusal by Normala to shake hands, it has sparked a fierce debate.

The demonising of PAS



What is the message Barisan Nasional is sending out? Umno says that if PAS wants to implement Islamic laws then it cannot be done in Pakatan Rakyat since DAP opposes it, so PAS would have to join Barisan Nasional to do that. Is that also the view of MCA, MIC, Gerakan, PPP and so on?
NO HOLDS BARRED
Raja Petra Kamarudin

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Beggars and Prostitutes

Written by John Doe

UMNO HATES their original lineage !! They deny that they are the end-Product of Dravidoid and Mongoloid marriage. UMNO openly calls their own ancestors Beggars and Prostitutes !! The Hang Li Poh Story announces their Mongoloid ancestry. The Queens of the Malaccan Sultanate were Tamil Muslims. The Austronesoid DNA comprises of Mongoloid DNA and Dravidoid DNA. Hundreds of conclusive tests have been done. And for those who contest this, let's not forget that UMNO wants to prosecute Anwar with DNA, and indeed they have done so before. So, why is it unacceptable to study and understand how the Austronesoid DNA is the end product of the Dravidoid and the Mongoloid?
Please read here for a vast selection of University tests to better understand these DNA tests. Observe that no two tests contradict each other, despite being carried out by various Universities from the world over. In fact, Cambridge University has done extensive tests and have mapped out the Genome paths. So has National Geographic.

http://www.google.com.my/search?sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8&q=austronesian+dna+pdf

Going back to the inferiority complex. Chua Soi Lek aka "Pornstar" does not seem to have problems with "Prostitutes". Neither does MCA, nor does UMNO. Because they would have shut down the entire Racist Group already, if they had been so opposed to the idea. Why not also shut down "Club De'Vegas" or "D'Boss" in Kuala Lumpy-Dumpy as well?

For UMNO to call her own ancestry Prostitutes and Beggars is indeed strange. Is UMNO so Pariah that they have to create this "illusion" to lie to themselves that they are indeed what they are? Instead creating Mental-Masturbation Slogans like "Ketuanan Melayu" to pretend that their ancestry is one not of Beggars and Prostitutes? Maybe they found out something about Hang Li Poh? Maybe they found out that she was indeed a "Cheap Prostitute" whom Emperor Yong Le sent to screw Parameswara. And from the loins of this Cheap Prostitute comes forth the "Prostitutional Monarchy of Malaysia". Are you happy now? How terribly have you insulted the Sultans of this country !! The same applies for the Beggar Tamil Muslim Queens of the Malaccan Sultanate. The Sultans of Malacca decides to screw some cheap Beggar Tamil Whore to bear the "Great Malaccan Royal Line". The same ones whom you now prostrate yourselves to and bleat "Ampun Tuanku". Royal Ancestry comprises of Beggars and Prostitutes, because of what unashamedly you said in public !! Bravo !!! Subarashi Desho?!?!

What are you going to call Mahathir now? Budak Keling? Sure !! Why now, and not when he was Prime Minister? Oh, but you did !! And yet, you kissed his hand, and still continue to lick his shoes whenever you wanted a contract or two.

UMNO !! What is WRONG with you? Are you so inbred that you cannot speak logically anymore? Mahathir openly called you inbred in his book "The Malay Delima". In fact, he did it right on page ONE !! So not only are you inbred, but you are "Pariah Inbred Children of Prostitutes and Beggars" PICPB should then be your new Acronym to replace UMNO. Or, if you still wish to continue to stay united, then you could call your organization, UPICPBNO; to mean "United Pariah Inbred Children of Prostitutes and Beggars National Organization". You might even get a Tax rebate if you registered as an NGO, or Charity Organization instead.

With all the chaos that you have created, with all the crimes against the people's of Malaysia that you have committed, one seriously wonders why they have not taken to the streets to riot, and take over the government like how the Thais did to Thaksin !! Maybe Malaysians are too weak-minded... Maybe they are too Timid... or Maybe they just don't care...

In that case, long live "United Pariah Inbred Children of Prostitutes and Beggars National Organization". That is because you will rule Malaysia for the next Millennia !!

Will Tunisia Be the First Domino?

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703555804576102343246718046.html

In Egypt, too, protestors are laying waste to the mistaken notion that Arabs and Muslims are politically passive.

By ANWAR IBRAHIM

Tunisians earlier this month forced their president out of office, marking the first popular revolution in an Arab country in modern history. The swiftness with which it came about should send a clear message to other autocracies and dictatorships in the Muslim world.

The longevity of such regimes comes from their ability to suppress dissent with state-controlled organs, particularly the military. What Tunisia’s example demonstrates is that when one of these organs malfunctions—as the security forces did when they failed to mobilize effectively—others, like the media and the judiciary, can fall rapidly as well.

Could this be a Berlin Wall moment for the Middle East? Will other Arab states that employ the same modus operandi of political oppression also fall?

In a 2005 address at the U.S.- Islamic World Forum in Doha, I argued that democratization would come to the Middle East sooner than most projected, and I criticized what I consider to be the U.S.’s “policy of selective ambivalence.” While the Bush administration extolled the virtue of freedom in waging its war on terror, the U.S. remained closely allied with various countries that use blatantly repressive policies to stamp out civil society and subvert democracy.

This ambivalence has not dissipated under the Obama administration. Despite Mr. Obama’s historic speech in Cairo, where he specifically extolled representative government, this White House continues to work closely with a range of Middle Eastern autocrats. From the perspective of democrats in the region, this is because democratization will likely yield governments that tend to be less responsive to U.S. demands—particularly those governments regarded as Islamist.

Consider Tunisia. Zine El Abidine Ben Ali would not have remained in power for 25 years had it not been for American support. The fact that this kleptocratic regime finally fell is a stark reminder that government built on the suppression of its citizens is temporary. We saw this in Iran in 1979 with the dramatic downfall of the Shah, and also in 1998 when Indonesians peacefully transitioned to democracy after three decades of military rule.

The problems that plague the Arab world remain overwhelming: the concentration of wealth and power by the few over the many, poor infrastructure, primitive education systems, minimal health care, and decreasing incomes in the face of rising food prices and cost of living. Corruption and nepotism reign in the complete absence of accountability and transparency.

It is a perfect recipe for political upheaval: political marginalization and economic impoverishment for the people and ill-gotten wealth for the ruling elite. It’s a reality that can’t be cloaked by propaganda—citizens can see the reality on YouTube and Facebook—though the leaders certainly try. Indeed, no Arab leader has owned up to any of these evils, other than by offering pious platitudes about improving the economic lot of their people.

It would be foolhardy for governments in the region to regard Tunisia as an isolated case. The economic and political grievances that spawned the revolution are not unique to that country. One need only walk the streets of Cairo and Karachi, or roam the back lands in Algeria and Afghanistan, to see how grinding poverty and oppression can crush a person’s dignity.

Autocratic rulers accustomed to permanent sovereignty might consider changing their mindset. The Tunisian uprising was driven by a desire for freedom and justice, not by any particular ideology. The bogeyman of Islamism, the oft-cited scapegoat of Middle Eastern dictators to justify their tyranny, must therefore be reconsidered or junked altogether. The U.S., too, should learn a lesson about the myth that secular tyrants and dictators are its best bet against Islamists. Revolutions, be they secular or religious, are born of a universal desire for autonomy. The common thread that binds the Iranian revolution and the Tunisian upheaval is the rising discontent of the people after years of suffering under oppressive rule.

Could Tunisia’s revolution turn this winter of Arab discontent into a spring for Middle Eastern freedom? As Tunisia moves into the league of Middle Eastern democracies along with countries such as Turkey, for much of the rest of the Muslim world democracy remains elusive. Opposition groups in countries like Egypt have found a beacon of hope in Tunisians’ struggle. Demonstrations in Cairo and throughout the region lay waste to the mistaken notion that Arab and Muslims are politically passive and prone to authoritarianism. But will they be given a fair chance? The Palestinians chose their own leaders through the ballot box, but the West changed the rules of engagement midway through the game.

The fundamental lesson is clear: The U.S. must stop supporting tyrants and autocrats whether in the Middle East, Pakistan or Southeast Asia. Let this be a new dawn for democracy in the Arab and Muslim world.

Mr. Ibrahim, a former deputy prime minister of Malaysia, is a member of parliament for the Justice Party and leader of the opposition.

Balu pendaki Everest gagal dapat kebenaran merayu

Utusan Malaysia

PUTRAJAYA 25 Jan. - Balu pendaki Everest, Sarjan M. Moorthy gagal segala usaha untuk mendapat perisytiharan bahawa suaminya masih penganut Hindu sewaktu kematiannya, lima tahun lalu.

Ia berikutan keputusan Mahkamah Persekutuan hari ini yang sebulat suara menolak permohonan S. Kaliammal, 35, bagi mendapat kebenaran merayu.

Berikutan itu, wanita tersebut turut gagal dalam tuntutannya agar jenazah Moorthy atau nama Islamnya, Mohamad Abdullah yang meninggal dunia pada 20 Disember 2005, disempurnakan mengikut adat istiadat Hindu.

Panel tiga hakim diketuai oleh Hakim Besar Malaya, Tan Sri Arifin Zakaria memutuskan demikian setelah berpuas hati bahawa persoalan undang-undang yang dikemukakannya bukan isu baharu yang melayakkannya mendapat kebenaran merayu.

Keputusan sebulat suara tersebut turut dicapai oleh Hakim Tan Sri Zulkefli Ahmad Makinudin dan Hakim Tan Sri James Foong Cheng Yuen.

Dengan itu, keputusan Mahkamah Rayuan menolak permohonan Kaliammal agar semakan kehakimannya untuk mencabar bidang kuasa mahkamah sivil dikembalikan ke Mahkamah Tinggi Kuala Lumpur, kekal.

Pada 20 Ogos tahun lalu, Mahkamah Rayuan berpendapat, pertikaian mengenai status agama seseorang yang diisytiharkan telah memeluk Islam hanya boleh ditentukan secara eksklusif di mahkamah syariah, bukan mahkamah sivil.

Ini kerana undang-undang sudah mengiktiraf bahawa perselisihan berhubung status agama seseorang Islam merupakan bidang kuasa tunggal mahkamah syariah tanpa mengira isu yang dipertikaikan.

Sehubungan itu, Mahkamah Tinggi tidak mempunyai bidang kuasa menyemak dan membatalkan perintah Mahkamah Tinggi Syariah yang mengisytiharkan Moorthy seorang Islam.

Krishnan's family cannot accept 2nd autopsy results

Krishnan's family does not accept 2nd autopsy result

(Malaysiakini) The preliminary report on the second autopsy on electrician M Krishnan, who died in police custody on Jan 7, concurs with an earlier finding that he died from stomach ulcer.

NONELawyer Gurmit Singh Hullon (left), who is representing Krishnan's family, said his clients could not accept the finding of the second autopsy.

“We are not happy with the result and we do not accept it because it is conflicts with evidence provided that Krishnan was assaulted, beaten and left to die, without medical attention, for five days,” he Gurmit said.
The second post-mortemm performed at the Universiti Malaya Medical Centre (UMMC) by pathologist Dr K Mathiharen, carried out after the family refused to accept the outcome of the first autopsy.

Krishnan's wife P Revathi, 37, told reporters she did not accept the UMMC preliminary post-mortem report, insisting that her husband died from assault by the police.

NONE“I will fight this in court, no matter how long it takes. I will wait for the official first and and second post-mortem results,” she said, fighting to hold back her tears.

“We have two eyewitnesses, who saw everything, and there are photographs of his bruises.”
First report still not out
Gurmit said Mathiharen told him that there were several contusions on Krishnan's body but this was not reflected in the autopsy result.

The lawyer said the family would wait for both the official documents on the first and second post-mortem findings before considering further action.

Mathiharen is expected to release his report on Feb 7.

Krishnan, 37, was arrested on Jan 3 for what police said was a drug related offence. He was remanded for four days.
On Jan 6, he was sent to hospital after developing stomach complications, and was pronounced dead the next day.

The first post-mortem, conducted at Hospital Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, concluded that Krishnan died from stomach ulcer.

On Jan 19, both the police and Attorney-General's Chambers gave the family the green light to seek a second post-mortem following an application filed in court.

Egypt anti-govt protests escalate




The United States believes "the Egyptian government is stable," despite stunning protests calling for the ouster of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, US secretary of state Hillary Clinton said on Tuesday.

Clinton's comments on Tuesday came after thousands of Egyptians, inspired by Tunisian demonstrators, gathered in Cairo and towns across the country calling for reforms and demanding an end to Mubarak's presidency, which has now lasted for nearly three decades.

Thousands of demonstrators attended the anti-government protests. Some in downtown Cairo hurled rocks and climbed atop an armoured police truck.

In a statement issued Tuesday night, the Egyptian interior ministry blamed the Muslim Brotherhood, the country's technically banned but largest opposition group, for fomenting the protests.

Police responded to the demonstraters blasts from a water cannon, and set upon crowds with batons and acrid clouds of tear gas to clear them crying out "Down with Mubarak'' and demanding an end to the country's grinding poverty.

Police have also used rubber bullets against protesters, with some injuries, reported Rawya Rageh, Al Jazeera's correspondent in Cairo.

Clinton urged all sides in Egypt to exercise restraint following the street protests, saying she believed the government was looking for ways to respond to its populations concerns.

But at least 30 people are already reported to have been arrested in Cairo, official sources said.

More protests

Protests also broke out in the Mediterranean city of Alexandria, the Nile Delta cities of Mansura and Tanta and in the southern cities of Aswan and Assiut, witnesses reported.

The rallies had been promoted online by groups saying they speak for young Egyptians frustrated by the kind of poverty and oppression which triggered the overthrow of Tunisia's president.

Egyptian blogger Hossam El Hamalawy said technology was important in facilitating "the domino effect" needed for demonstrations like this one to progress.

Mamdouh Khayrat, 23, travelled from the governorate of Qalubiya to attend protests in Cairo. He spoke to Al Jazeera's Adam Makary. "We want a functioning government, we want Mubarak to step down, we don't want emergency law, we don't want to live under this kind of oppression anymore," he said.

"Enough is enough, things have to change and if Tunisia can do it, why can't we?" Khayrat added.

El Hamalawy told Al Jazeera the protests were necessary "to send a message to the Egyptian regime that Mubarak is no different than Ben Ali and we want him to leave too".

On Tuesday downtown Cairo came to a standstill with protesters chanting slogans and marching towards what Al Jazeera's Rageh called the "symbols of their complaints and their agony," the headquarters of the ruling National Democratic Party, the foreign ministry and the state television.

Scenes such as these have not been seen in the capital since the 1970s.

A day of revolution

Black-clad riot police, backed by armoured vehicles and fire engines, have been deployed in a massive security operation in Cairo, with the biggest concentrations and likely flashpoints, including: the Cairo University campus, the central Tahrir Square and the courthouse where protesters are said to be gathering.

Coinciding with a national holiday in honour of the police, a key force in keeping president Mubarak in power for 30 years, the outcome in Egypt on Tuesday is seen as a test on whether vibrant Web activism can translate into street action.

Organisers have called for a "day of revolution against torture, poverty, corruption and unemployment".

"Activists said they wanted to use this particular day to highlight the irony of celebrating Egypt's police at a time when police brutality is making headlines," Al Jazeera's Rageh reported.

Banned demonstrations

The Egyptian government had earlier warned protesters.

"The security apparatus will deal firmly and decisively with any attempt to break the law," the government's director for security in the capital Cairo said in a statement released ahead of the protests.

Since Egypt bans demonstrations without prior permission, opposition groups say they have been denied such permits, any protesters may be detained.

Habib el-Adli, the interior minister, had earlier issued orders to "arrest any persons expressing their views illegally".

"Beginning of the end"

Activists have been relying heavily on social networks to organise the protests.

"Our protest on the 25th is the beginning of the end," wrote organisers of a Facebook group with 87,000 followers.

"People are fed up of Mubarak and of his dictatorship and of his torture chambers and of his failed economic policies. If Mubarak is not overthrown tomorrow then it will be the day after. If its not the day after its going to be next week," El Hamalawy told Al Jazeera.

Rights watchdog Amnesty International has urged Egypt's authorities "to allow peaceful protests".

Protests in Egypt, the biggest Arab state and a keystone Western ally in the Middle East, tend to be poorly attended and are often quashed swiftly by the police, who prevent marching.

Source:Al Jazeera and agencies

Media Event 2: 26/1/2011 @ 9.00am, 14 year Mughilan in jail 3 months now because can not afford RM 1,700 bail & lawyer. Vindictive police prosecuted him because he lodge police report against bully police for beating him up. P.Uthayakumar & M.Manoharan to press KL Magistrate Court to release him tommorow.

21
Media Event 2: 26/1/2011 @ 9.00am,
14 year Mughilan in jail 3 months now because can not afford RM 1,700 bail & lawyer. Vindictive police prosecuted him because he lodge police report against bully police for beating him up.
P.Uthayakumar & M.Manoharan to press KL Magistrate Court to release him tommorow.
For more information contact: 012–6362287
S.JAYATHAS
Information Chief
P1010022
P1010035

Plans to amend press laws to cover online news

PUTRAJAYA, Jan 25 – The Printing Presses and Publications Act 1984 will be amended to expand its scope and include ‘publications’ posted online and plug loopholes said Home Ministry secretary-general Datuk Seri Mahmood Adam.

He said among other things, the Home Ministry was looking at the definition of “publication” and whether it should include Internet content, blogs or Facebook to expand the Act due to the changing landscape of the digital era.

Mahmood said the ministry was working with the Attorney-General’s Chambers to study the proposed amendments.

“We hope the amendments will be tabled in Parliament by March this year because we need to overcome weaknesses, especially those involving multimedia content,” he said after presenting appointment letters to members and associate members of the Film Censorship Board and Film Appeal Board today.

“We have to expand the act so that it does not only cover print media because the landscape is totally different now, especially with the intrusion of digital technology,” he said.

Mahmood said the ministry monitored Internet content on a daily basis including what was shown through online video site YouTube.

He added that the amendments were not meant to tighten control over the press but to address loopholes in the law and make it more inclusive.

“We monitor what is in YouTube and discuss it. We won’t be able to control it, but we have to see how to go about it.”

On films, Mahmood said the ministry was also updating the guidelines and standard operating procedures of film censorship in line with the current downloading technologies.

He said although the existing guidelines were only a year old, they had to be modified to ensure they suited the 1Malaysia concept of giving priority to the people’s interest.

“Modification of guidelines is to ensure we can control the entry of films using the latest technology such as pen-drives and computers. – Bernama

Dog abuse video triggers online search for culprits

Stills from the video depicting a toy poodle being punished because it is unable to stand on its hind legs.
KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 25 – A 15-minute video showing a man abusing a toy poodle appears to have triggered a voluntary “online” investigation by Internet users in a joint effort to identify the culprits captured in the clip.

Angered by the display of violence against the tiny animal apparently named “sushi” for its failure to stand on its hind legs, websurfers exchanged emails and messages via social netwoking sites like Facebook and Twitter over the weekend to search for the man and the woman behind the camera.

So far, several users have pointed the finger at a man and his ex-girlfriend as the likely “dog abusers” but their claims have yet to be verified.

In her Facebook profile page, the girl was seen posing in snapshots with a puppy closely resembling “sushi”. She has another puppy which was photographed in a standing pose.

The same girl was also seen in a picture with the alleged abuser in the video, along with a group of friends. She allegedly drives a Proton Wira and lives in Kepong.

An official from the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) told The Malaysian Insider today that the organisation had also joined the ad hoc “online” investigation and was appealing for public information on the incident.

“But your guess is as good as mine. What we know for now is probably what you know from all the information obtained through the Internet,” said the official.

The official, however, confirmed that that the matter had been forwarded to the Veterinary Services Department, under the Agriculture and Agro-Based Industries Ministry in Putrajaya for further action.

“They are the authority that can actually take action in these cases so this is usually our protocol.

“But on our part, we are trying our best to verify if these two individuals were truly the ones in the abuse video. We hope the public will continue their efforts to help us,” said the official.

The 15-minute-and-eight-second clip shows a young man with partially dyed hair repeatedly hitting the puppy every time it failed to stand up straight on its hind quarters.

The man is shirtless, clad in only a pair of blue jeans with a black belt and sports several tattoos on both arms and a large ring on his right index finger.

The incident takes place in what appears to be a cluttered bedroom with marble flooring.

The puppy, a toy poodle, is yelled at repeatedly in Cantonese for failing to obey the man’s instructions and is punished each time it slumps on its hind legs by being slapped, punched and thrown across the room.

Despite its yelps and obvious lethargy, the man forces the chocolate-coloured canine to stand still on its hind legs, even wondering out loud at one point, “How come his backbone is so weak? Stand properly, stand properly. Maybe he is afraid of heights.”

A woman with dyed hair filmed the entire session and can be heard referring to the man occasionally as “dear”.

When “sushi” slumps on its hind legs and receives a few punches to the head as punishment, the girl is heard saying, “Dear, leave it alone. Can or not? She (sushi) fell ... she did not come down on her own.”

But the man ignores his girlfriend, who does not attempt to physically stop him from inflicting further torture on the puppy, and continues to scold “sushi”.

“He is afraid of heights ... taste my fist ... see if it hurts. Do not sit. Look up,” he instructs the dog.

He later shows the weak dog some food in a metal bowl then slaps it on the head with the receptacle.

“You see this (the bowl) and you are scared. You know what is going to happen right?” he says.

A Malaysian girl had reportedly discovered the clip in a pen drive she found at Suria KLCC and decided to upload the clip to her profile page on Facebook.

Her move triggered an immediate uproar among the online community with many users recording their disdain against the abuser and urging the authorities to identify the individual.

The clip also drew the attention of Singapore’s SPCA which immediately flashed out a notice through Facebook, urging for more information.

The Malaysian National Animal Welfare Foundation’s (MNWF) Facebook page has also been inundated with messages from indignant animal lovers, urging for a response from the authorities.

An official from MNWF told The Malaysian Insider that the organisation was aware of the incident and was looking into it.

Report slams Najib for ‘empty promises’


KUALA LUMPUR: The Human Rights Watch group has denounced, in its latest report, Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak’s pledge to uphold civil liberties as nothing more than empty promises.

The 650-page World Report 2011 is an annual review of human rights practices in more than 90 countries and territories worldwide.

It deemed that the continued repressive practices by the Najib administration was a “blatant disregard” to the pledges Malaysia made during its successful campaign for election to the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) last May.

Malaysia’s inclusion in the UNHRC was met with widespread criticism from international bodies which claimed that it fell short of United Nations’ standards.

“The Malaysian government is all talk and no action when it comes to human rights,” said HRW’s deputy Asia director, Phil Robertson.

“Prime Minister Najib and his ministers are mistaken if they think that floating ‘trial balloons’ to make badly needed changes to laws and policies is enough to keep Malaysian civil society and the international community at bay,” he added.

The report highlighted the three main issues which HRW had repeatedly admonished Malaysia for violating – freedom of expression, assembly and association.

Included under these issues were the Internal Security act (ISA), the Police Act 1967, the Sedition Act 1948 and the Printing Presses and Publications Act 1984.

“The Malaysian government does not hesitate to use draconian laws to harass or gag journalists critical of the authorities, human rights defenders, civil society activists, or members of the political opposition,” the report said.

It cited the sedition charge on political cartoonist Zunar, the ban on his books and the refusal to grant online news portal Malaysiakini a print license as examples of such violations.

HRW also took Malaysia to task for its recent amendments to the Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act which it said would likely reduce protection for trafficking victims and smuggled migrant workers.

“Rather than a serious and sustained effort, Malaysian officials have opted for short-term and ill-considered measures. Malaysia has a long way to go to be the rights-respecting nation that its government leaders claim it to be.

“The slogan of 1Malaysia should (also) apply to respect for international human rights standards, with renewed commitment followed by concrete actions,” Robertson said.

MP alleges cover up in post-mortem

Kapar MP S Manikavasagam believes the second autopsy on electrician M Krishnan, who died in police custody, is a “cover-up”.

KUALA LUMPUR: The preliminary report on the second autopsy on detainee M Krishnan who died in police custody earlythis month has shocked Kapar MP S Manikavasagam.

The second autopsy, conducted by Universiti Malaya Medical Centre (UMMC) pathologist Dr K Mathiharen, concurred with a first autopsy report which stated that Krishnan died from a stomach ulcer.

“It is shocking, I find this hard to believe. I believe it was a cover-up by the police and hospital authority,” he said in response to the second post mortem result which was released today.

The family had rejected the results of the first autopsy, conducted at the Hospital Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, because Krishnan’s body was heavily bruised.

The family then field an an application in court for second post-mortem.

Speaking to FMT, Manikavasagam said: “As usual the victim’s family was played-out. I was with the family when they visited Krishnan’s body.”

“The body had bruises all over his back, an open cut wound on his right abdomen and a bruise on his right eye. How could he have self-afflicted such injuries if not beaten by the police?” he asked.

Asking on the family’s next course of action, Manikavasagam replied: “Nothing could done.”

“The family cannot do anything because they have cremated Krishnan’s body according to Hindu rites,” he said.

Krishnan, 37, a father of the six, was arrested on Jan 3 in Taman Miharja, Cheras along with four others for allegedly trafficking drugs.

He was found dead in the lock-up at the Bukit Jalil police station on Jan 6.

Activist and dentist latest MLCM candidates


The Malaysian Civil Liberties Movement (MCLM) has named former AWAM president Haslinah Yacob and dentist Dr Nedunchelian Vengu as its third and fourth candidates for the next general election.
Haslinah, 49, has been involved in grassroots and advocacy work on women’s rights and empowerment for the past decade.

Nedunchelian, 42, a private practitioner, has served on a Health Ministry committee and is well-known for his social work as well as his efforts to raise industry standards.

On Dec 12, MCLM unveiled prominent lawyer and National Human Rights Society president Malik Imtiaz Sarwar as its first candidate.

Its second candidate, human rights lawyer Sreekant Pillai, was announced at the movement’s first public forum on Dec 21.

Launched on October 30, MCLM is headed by blogger Raja Petra Kamaruddin as its chairman and lawyer Haris Ibrahim as its president. The movement aims to pick 30 candidates to be fielded in the 13th general election.

BIODATA Hajjah Haslinah Yacob

Hajjah Haslinah, a Qualified Valuer has been running an established map-making company with her life partner for the last 20 years. She is also the Immediate Past President of All Women’s Action Society (AWAM), a non-partisan independent feminist organisation committed to improving the lives of women in Malaysia. She has been involved in grassroots and advocacy work on women’s rights, empowerment, among others, for the last 10 years.

This 49-year-old from Kuala Lumpur believes that a person should be given the opportunity to compete on an equal basis; taking into consideration the various discriminations impeding this access to opportunity.

Her volunteer work at AWAM and other civil societies has made her emphatic and sensitive to people, and also enabled her to be in touch with the grassroots. These have shaped her thoughts and made her realise that there are still injustices in our country.

Haslinah is determined to do more to affect the lives of those marginalized and victimised. She believes that by becoming a Member of Parliament will give her that opportunity.

“I need to bring the people whose voices are being ignored by the majority, to parliament to make a substantial contribution to the country. I no longer want to stay in the sideline, but to roll up my sleeve now and do something.”

“So that I am not beholden to anyone but the Rakyat and God. I do not wish to waste my time and energy in internal politicking, but to do the work. Three years ago, I had to ensure my children are well taken care of first. Now that they are independent, I have time to concentrate in doing work for the people.”

Hajjah Haslinah is mother to three children, aged 25, 23 and 17, and is married to Haji Ho Chin Soon, a Fellow of the Institution of Surveyors Malaysia and a Registered Valuer with the Board of Valuers, Appraisers & Estate Agents Malaysia.

BIODATA Dr Nedunchelian Vengu

Dr Nedunchelian Vengu, a 42-year-old dentist, has been actively involved in social work since his primary school days giving free tuition to younger children and cleaning and painting temple hall.

This father of two children, aged 13 and five, had served as the President of The Malaysian Private Dental Practitioners Association for three terms, and other posts in numerous other dental organisations.

Dr Nedu, a private practitioner, had served as a member of a Ministry of Health committee to formulate guidelines for dental healthcare professionals on blood borne disease infection and was the dental practitioners association spokesperson in all meetings in Malaysia concerning private dental practitioners from 2005 to 2008.

He was a fellow of three institutions – the Academy Dentaire Internationale, International College of Dentists and International College of Continuing Dental Education. In 2009, he was awarded the Outstanding Service Award by the Malaysian Private Dental Practitioners Association and bestowed Ahli Mahkota Selangor(AMS) by DYMM Sultan Selangor, Sultan Salahuddin Abdul Aziz Shah.

At this while, Dr Nedu has been offering his services in countless medical and dental camps organised by non-governmental organisations.

He has also given talks at gatherings and schools and organised seminars on dental care, motivation for students, among others. Dr Nedu is a much sought after speaker by RTM and Astro having appeared on Selamat Pagi Malaysia and Tamil programmes.

Dr Nedu is the second of five children to his father who is a technician and housewife mother. He grew up in Jalan Kapar in Klang and now resides in Shah Alam.

His wife, Nyanambikai Velagri, who was previously a finance manager in a logistics firm, has devoted her life to taking care of the family to allow Dr Nedu to devote time to his private practice and social work.

Sreekant Pillai on BFM Radio

Sreekant Pillai, lawyer and a political candidate for the Malaysian Civil Liberties Movement, tells why he decided to go into politics, the challenges he anticipates, causes he would fight for, and about his father, MGG Pillai, prominent journalist.

GO HERE TO HEAR THE PROGRAM 

Stop Calling Each Other Treasonous

From Malaysiakini

PKR de facto leader Anwar Ibrahim has rejected the ongoing ‘contest’ between BN and Pakatan Rakyat to label the other as treasonous.

“I agree with you (that this is regressive politics) and I do not share the view (of taking up that sort of argument),” he said today in Shah Alam.

“The issue debated was that of the (Selangor) constitution and the position of the rulers, so we should emphasis on whether this amendment will strengthen or weaken the spirit of the constitution.”

However, he said, he could not blame his Pakatan colleagues for taking up this argument as the label was first hurled by Umno.

“Umno called us treasonous, traitors to Malays and lackeys to the Chinese so (Pakatan leaders) were influenced to sometimes answer with the same language. But if it were me, I would suggest that they answer based on facts of the 1993 amendment and speeches according to the Hansard.

“The Umno leadership seems to be belittling the ability of the rulers to think for themselves, and I don’t think the rulers can be dragged in just like that.”
Asked if Pakatan would make another bid to return the power to appoint the state secretary, financial officer and legal advisor to the sultan as per the pre-1993 Selangor constitution, Anwar said: “Our position … is that we respect their (the rulers’) position as guaranteed and enshrined in the constitution, as we are a constitutional monarchy.

“The power and the authority rests with the people, the mandate is given by the people… (but) there is point having the rulers if they are not consulted as per the 1993 amendment.”

Interestingly, Anwar admitted that, in 1993, he had headed Umno’s delegation to negotiate with then Agong Sultan Azlan Shah who represented the Council of Rulers on the matter.

“I know what happened and I don’t think the Rulers forgot their experience, it’s recent history,” he said.

On another issue, he renewed his call to Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak to debate on the economy, particularly on Pakatan’s 100-day reform plan.

However, he said, if the PM insists on attacking him on a personal level, he is willing to take him on.

“He doesn’t reject my call (for the debate) but he says I will fall sick, or talks about londeh (slipping down the pants)…I don’t want to entertain these personal issues, I want to talk about the economy.

“But if he insists, I am ready, even the sodomy case. I can answer and I want to bring up the issue of graft, murder, stealing someone else’s wife, Port Dickson, all that can be brought up too.”

He said personal attacks seem to be the modus operandi of BN, as evident in the attacks on PAS’ Tenang by-election candidate Normala Sudirman (right) for choosing not to shake hands with males for religious reasons.

“This is not the issue, the issues are good governance, graft, rising cost of living, Pakatan and BN policies and the ability and values of the candidates.

“For (MCA president Dr) Chua Soi Lek to lead the personal attacks is absolutely odd. It’s pathetic… that’s too strong a term, but for Chua to make personal attacks? What has happened to discourse in this country? Confine it to policy. But that seems to be the pattern.”

‘Don’t pass the buck’

Anwar renewed his call for the government and agencies including Bank Negara, the Securities Commission, Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission and the police force to probe why Malaysia was recorded to have about RM900 billion in funds illicitly flowing out of the country from 2000-2008.

Malaysiakini reported last Thursday that Malaysia is ranked world’s no 5 by Washington-based Global Financial Integrity in illicit outflows.

“Do a detailed study, don’t just brush it aside. This is something for the finance minister to answer, not something to just pass on to Bank Negara.

“RM10 billion to RM20 billion in leaks is huge but RM200 billion leaking out (in 2008)… to defend it would be atrocious.”

Last Friday, Najib had refused to comment on the matter asking reporters to check instead with Bank Negara.

The central bank has informed Malaysiakini that it will release an official response soon.

Anwar was in Shah Alam after the first of the monthly luncheon talks organised in his capacity as the Selangor government financial advisor.

Today, Malaysian Institute of Economic Research chief Zakariah Abdul Rashid spoke on the issue of subsidies, saying that the rolling back of subsidies on essential goods would hit low-income households the hardest.

He added that the present lot of subsidies are not targeted and need to be rationalised, but this also means pouring the savings into building a social safety net, improving public transportation and public healthcare services.