Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Six years lost but mother keeps on battling

1:28PM Apr 22, 2015

By Hafiz Yatim

Six years lost but mother keeps on battling

As Prasana Diksa celebrated her birthday on April 8, her mother M Indira Gandhi longed to see her child who was snatched away from her six years ago while still on mother's milk by her former husband K Pathmanathan @ Ridhuan Abdullah.

Such is the fate of Indira Gandhi who never saw her child develop in her young formative years.

Hence, the kindergarten teacher now hopes the Inspector-General of Police Khalid Abu Bakar will abide by the recovery order issued by the Ipoh High Court for her to see her daughter.

In an unanimous decision today, the Federal Court gave Indira permission to hear a question of law posed by her to the Inspector-General of Police Khalid Abu Bakar and the police.

The court also dismissed Pathmanathan @ Ridhuan Abdullah's leave application on his right to be heard because he has ‎yet to purge his contempt for not returning their daughter Prasana Diksa to Indira since 2009.

Indira (pix, right) and Pathmanathan@Riduan are embroiled in an interfaith child custody tussle which began in 2009 when the father converted to Islam before spiriting the child   away and converting her to Islam too without the mother's consent.

The case has travelled through both the courts and and the government system sparked by an Ipoh High Court decision in 2010 granting custody of Prasana to her mother.

After the child was not surrendered to her mother, the same court last year granted  Indira an order of mandamus (to compel) for the IGP and the police to recover the child.

The police, however, say they cannot act as a separate custody order was granted by the Ipoh Syariah Court to Ridhuan. The apex court today allowed Indira to question the police as to the legality of their stand.

Police refuse to act

"I only managed to send a text message to my daughter through my former husband's handphone to wish her a happy birthday.

"The number is still operational and I believe he (Ridhuan) is still in the country and has my daughter.  There was however, no reply to my message. I still harbour hopes of meeting her again," said the mother of three. Her other two children are staying with her.

Indira's lawyer M Kulasegaran (extreme left, pix below) said when the Ipoh High Court agreed to issue the recovery order last year, he tried to serve it on the IGP.

“I waited for hours at Bukit Aman to meet the IGP last year but he refused to see me. I tried to serve a similar order on the Ipoh OCPD, but again, as with the IGP, he refused to see me.

“We are the only country in the Commonwealth where the IGP and the police do not want to receive a court order,” he said.

Kulasegaran who is also Ipoh Barat MP, said he understands the police could be in a bind following the two court orders and jurisdiction.

However, he said this can be ventilated or argued out in court.

He further questioned the Attorney-General's Chambers in advising the police not to receive such court orders.

The federal lawmaker said he will bring the issue up in Parliament.

Unilateral religious conversion of a child has been a bone of contention in multi-racial and multi-religion Malaysia and following Indira's case in 2009, the cabinet ruled against allowing unilateral conversion.
However, this has not been reflected by the appropriate changes in the law.

Kulasegaran had previously questioned whether Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak was committed towards implementing the Cabinet decision on the matter.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

In view of the rattling evidence in Court, will the Education Ministry conduct an inquiry for possible actions against the Examinations Syndicate officials?

Press Statement by M. Kula Segaran, DAP National Vice Chairman and MP for Ipoh Barat in Seremban on 16th April 2014

In view of the rattling evidence in Court, will the Education Ministry conduct an inquiry for possible actions against the Examinations Syndicate officials?
Subbarau, who teaches at SJKT Ladang Batang Benar, has been charged with five offences under Section 8 (1) (c) of the Official Secrets Act 1972 for allegedly involved in last year’s leak of UPSR papers (OSA). The charges under this Act are serious as if found guilty the accused gets a minimum sentence of 1 year for each offence with a maximum of 7 years. So for 5 offences he could be in jail for a maximum of 35 years!

Today the Court delivered its decision.

It was alleged that the accused knowingly sent out via WhatsApps UPSR question papers of 2014 which exam papers were apparently classified as “Official Secret” under the Act. The classification was done by the then Malaysian Examinations Syndicate director Dr Na'imah Ishak.

Dr Na’imah in evidence has said that she could not confirm who leaked out the questions.
A total of 44 exam papers were classified as "secret" by Dr. Na'imah. She had accordingly signed and dated the classification. These 44 papers are the total exam papers set for UPSR schools nation wide( National,Chinese and Tamil).Classifying the UPSR exam papers as "Secret" so it thus becomes a secret document under the OSA.

During cross examination she conceded there were amendments to 6 of the total 44 UPSR papers after they were classified as "Secret". Apparently the amendments were on the format and the contents of the UPSR questions.

The 6 papers were 1) Mathematics 2) Science SK 3) Tamil Pemahaman 4) Tamil penulisan 5) Mathematica 1 SJKT 6) mathematics 2 SJKT.

So she had to reclassify these 6 papers as they are now considered as new exam papers. She accordingly inserts signatures at all the 6 papers when classifying them as "Secret". Unfortunately no dates were inscribed on the amended items. Thus the 6 UPSR exam appears have no dates mention to classify it as "Secret". So strictly the 6 UPSR exam papers are not SECRET documents within in the meaning of OSA.

For mathematics paper 015/1 she had wrongly classified it as mathematics paper 2 when the paper code would have been mathematics paper 1. When asked about this discrepancy she replied “ terlepas pandang”. Also she conceded she has been careless and accepted responsibility for all the mistakes.

On 27th January this year, the two senior Examinations Syndicate officials who were suspended last September over the UPSR exam paper leaks have been cleared of wrongdoing by Education Minister II Datuk Seri Idris Jusoh. Malaysia Boleh!

The Education Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin has, when suspending the officials, said that incidents like this will raise questions about the integrity of the examination syndicate and the overall public examinations system in the country.

In view of the rattling evidence in court will the Ministry conduct an open inquiry for possible action against the officials? Can we expect changes and improvements in the system? Or will these be treated as trivial matters which will be swept under the carpet?

The investigation officer (IO) is one ASP Irwan. The IO gathered from a police report lodged by Nik Suhaimi that a teacher had sent all these questions from Johore to a top examination Officer Nik Suhaimi. When I asked the IO did he call up the teacher from Johore for investigation he said no. Why was this teacher from Johore not charged like all others?

He further said the accused was remanded for 4 days although he had asked the court for 7days. When I asked what he had investigated on day one of arrest, he had replied he wasn’t sure. He gave the same answer for the second and third day. Only on the fourth day, he took down a statement and released the accused.

Why the need to remand the accused for four days when investigation was completed by taking a statement. Why the need to handcuff from his house and dragged to police lock up? Subrao was treated inhumanly. This was a gross abuse of police powers.

The IO had abused his position by detaining a citizen for more days than required, thus due action should be taken against him.