Monday, November 4, 2013

MP, State Assemblyman prevented from entering Deepavali bazaar

Viewpoint: MP, State Assemblyman prevented from entering Deepavali bazaar
First Published: 3:11pm, Nov 04, 2013
Last Updated: 3:11pm, Nov 04, 2013

ON the eve of Deepavali (Nov 1), Kluang MP Liew Chin Tong; State Assemblyman for Mengkibol, Tan Hong Pin and I, along with several others decided to take a stroll along Jalan Station,  Kluang to see the stalls set up to peddle Deepavali wares.  

At the entrance of the row of stalls, a group of men holding out to be MIC officials stopped Chin Tong and Hong Pin from entering on the ground that they had organised the stalls and that they, as the purported organisers, were not given notice of Chin Tong and Hong Pin arriving there.

Chin Tong politely pointed out that it was a public road and he could walk. The men refused to yield and spoke aggressively whilst claiming that it was an MIC organised event.

I did inform them that Chin Tong and Hong Pin were coming with me to which they said I could enter but not Chin Tong, Hong Pin and friends. Shortly after this, one Raman who claimed to be the divisional chairman of MIC started talking aggressively.  

While Raman was talking aggressively, another person amongst them shouted at the photographer in the national language to stop taking photographs (jangan ambil gambar).

Their behavior in stopping Chin Tong and Hong Pin from Jalan Station was the most unIndian and unMalaysian attitude.  

You never chase even your worst enemy away from your home should they visit you on an auspicious day like Deepavali. Jalan Station is not the exclusive property or MIC and neither was there signage restricting entry to MIC members only.

In a festive season, more so in Malaysia, the behavior of those who barricaded the road to prevent a Member of Parliament and State Assemblyman from entering was despicable and not within the Malaysian spirit for Deepavali.  

As an Malaysian of Indian origin, I am ashamed that some fellow Malaysians had behaved in such a despicable manner that Friday evening.

K Siladass is a a Kluang resident and a lawyer. He was DAP's Johor State Secretary in the 1960s.

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