Monday, October 6, 2008

Hindraf - Reader's Comments

I am saddened to hear of the negative comments to you two postings on Hindraf. A bitter lesson for us on the subject of open-mindedness of Malaysians. You already talked about, again twice, on maturedness of the Malaysian voters – let alone the emotional Hindraf supporters.

I am not a social psychologist or an anthropologists, but if there is a weakness amongst Indians everywhere in the world, it's that we are just too damned emotional. Emotion precedes rational thought.

Hindraf is a brainchild of Uthayamoorthy and his brother Waythamoorthy, who started the whole thing out of his own frustration against the Malaysian cops. They were famous for defending widow/mothers of dead prisoners, said to be killed by cops. Are they a rational-minded brave leadesr out to defend these poor families? I am not sure. I believeWaythamoorthy ran to UK when he was said to be threatened by cops.

A brave leader? I think not. I received forwarded mails describing him as William Wallace. Sir William Wallace was a Scottish freedom warrior who came from working class and, as you may have seen in the movie Braveheart, died for his people. Unlike the more glamorous death in the movie, he was drawn and quartered, pretty ugly death that the Hindraf supporters are probably not aware off.

And Waythamoorthy is compared to William Wallace. What did the other Hindraf leader do, when things were hot in Malaysia? He stayed on in cool UK, instead of coming here to face the realities. What is he, then? Salman Rushdie?

The mother of all ironies is the fact that the persons leading the organisation are not from the working class or materially poor. These are successful lawyers. And you may argue that it was a lawyer who led India to her independence. Of course, fellow Indian shot him later, but that's another story.

What Hindraf would have needed is a leader from the working class. Hindraf could have been a successful "union" for poor Indians. But no, we needed a hero to come along….
Let's face it; we are a race of hero-worshippers. We need hero, not from our own, but from a different category. Given a choice of a hardworking rubber taper with guts, or a successful Lawyer with easy entry to UK, whom would you choose? Okay, you and I will chose the rubber tapper, encourage him, give moral support and encourage him to be rational first.

But most people are drawn to the "higher" class of leaders. They supposedly have money and brain to match, and can buy them free beers. Alas, what can the poor rubber tapper give them?

I am merely repeating what you have wrote. All the good points in your point-to-point argument fell on the deaf ears. Again, a very ordinary reaction. We want to hear what we want to hear, other than that pay no attention. They probably caught your argument agreeing on few things, like education for example. Other than that, I can see them simply getting pissed, "how dare he disagree!" rather than taking that underused brain of theirs to task of understanding what you wrote, check the facts if they feel yours is wrong, or even counter-argue with their own facts.

Rational thinking is not an option. It is not even discussed in many Indian families. We are always told to not ask question and just follow. Our religious practises are thousands of years old, and are out of date, but lately they have been making a comeback in form of commerce, and you yourself have wrote many letters saying that these merchants are making use of Indians and their beliefs. Nobody listened.

We all know about Batu Caves and the money it made and where it went. Nobody went there to the Batu Caves management demanding to know what had happened. Nobody went to Samy Velu's house for peaceful demonstration for failing the Indians. No. They have to go to foreign embassy, which is there to protect the interest of its own countries and people.

And now, look at Hindraf. At odds with the opposition party for the same old, age old, temple issue! The whole world is in the brink of economic meltdown, with 100 plus years old corporations going bust, with economic uncertainties facing not you, not me, but the entire 6 billion plus populations.

And they are bitching about the temple, shrine, place of worship, or whatever you call it, which is probably frequented by less than 50 persons.

We cannot have an organisation. We have, how many, three or four parties representing us? Well, the big ones are MIC, IPF and PPP that has majority Indians. Then, someone split from MIC and formed MIC Baru and similar thing happened to IPF when Pandithan passed away. Oh, and Nallakaruppan started one on his own. And then, we have Hindraf, though not political…was very political and racist at the same time, and it too got split!

You want to know Indians, look at India. Look at the number of political parties, religious sects, NGOs, and not to forget the terribly buy unions. It just does not work. Best way is to work hard, do well and help each other…. as you have mentioned.

I read somewhere that late Tun VT Sambanthan said Indians and Chinese, outside of their homeland, are treated badly, almost second-class citizens, but it was Malays in Malaysians who took us in as brothers and sisters.

All baskets will have one or two rotten apples, but should we throw away those baskets?

My writing is here is certainly full of faults, mistakes and weak argument, but if other readers are reading this, please reread what Balan had wrote carefully and pay due attention. If needed, do independent check on facts and figures that he had argued. There are many sites, blogs (see the links) that can give you more perception on what is happening.

Here is something I agree with all of you Hindraf supporters: Samy Velu should go, should shut down MIC, and declare himself as a failure as Indian Malaysians leader. Work on that. Send

SMSes asking him to shut down MIC and apologise. After that, push for authorities to investigate whatever wrong doings he had committed in his time as minister in the cabinet. If you feel that it is too drastic, than do your usual peaceful assembly in front of his house asking him to hand over the administrations to one of your leaders, revive MIC, take control of it, and do what is needful in a more appreciated manner.

Oh, and get all the Indian organisations under one umbrella.

Do that if you still need a single powerful organisation to represent us all. Frankly, I think we can do without any organisation and just help each other as fellow human beings. In this world filled with wonderful flora and fauna, racial cards need not apply!

Rakesh Kumar

Balan : It was reported that there are 7,000 temples or shrines in Selangor and fewer that 50 Tamil Schools. What an achievement!! Imagine how much money could have been diverted to schools, students welfare or scholarship rather than building more and more temples, as a matter of pride and chest-thumping exercise for few individuals with bloated egos'.

Somebody said that 'common sense' is no longer common. I have to completely agree with that, at least in Malaysia.


Rakesh Kumar said...

A correction there. It was Uthayamoorthy who ran to UK when he claimed was threatened by cops.

Anonymous said...

Hi Balan,
I came here from JMD. Cool blog. Love the traffic lights pic.

Read your "about". Very much, I think, how I view life too. See, we may all be of different races but we may still see things the same way.

Don't you think it's only of late that we hear so much of "racist" this, racist that. Me, I put the blame entirely on the politicians. I mean we visit each other, don't we? Patronise businesses of all races, eat at all the different restaurants. In fact, we are carrying on as much as we have all these years as in our fathers' time and their fathers' time.
Once I was at the clinic, while waiting for the dr, got talking to a S. African woman (white). She asked me why is that she is reading a lot about this racism thing, but she sees us going about to work, eat and play as in any other nation.
That's something to think about.

Best wishes, Balan.
And happy blogging


balan said...

Hi Tusitala,

Traffic Light picture was taken at Jersey, Channel Island using a standard digital camera.

Agree that politicians are responsible for current situation, the arguement here is we, the rakyat are the ones who put them there.

Anonymous said...

Hello fren,

if we have that tidak apa attitude,
we will never move forward..

Every small issues should be taken seriously and execute solution.
if we neglect just because its a tiny thing,later it will contribute to worst thing ever happen,

is there any law stated that any temple frequented by less than 50 persons should not be taken as issue and should be demolished ?