The Education Ministry should weed out teachers who are ‘misfits’ for the harm they do to students in a plural society.

DAP MP for Ipoh Barat M Kulasegaran said the incident in Sekolah Kebangsaan Ibrahim in Sungei Petani where a senior teacher instructed non-Muslim pupils to drink water in the toilet and not elsewhere in the school during the fasting month was yet another example of gratuitous discrimination.

Initial reports of the incident say the senior teacher was alleged to have told non-Muslim pupils that they could drink their own urine if they wanted to.

“Two years ago, at a school in Sungei Buloh, non-Muslim students were asked to have their recess time refreshments in the space next to the shower stalls in the school,” recalled the national vice-chair of the DAP.

“That incident and this latest one in Sungei Petani show that racial and religious bigotry is spreading in the very arena where it should be nipped in the bud,” said Kulasegaran.

The federal legislator said pupils in their formative years in schools would be scarred for life if racial and religious bigotry is inflicted on them.

“They will grow up with the stigma in their make-up and things would be come worse if conditions in adult life reinforce what they have been inflicted with at a tender age,” he opined.

For that reason, he said teachers with bigoted mind-sets should be weeded out of the education system before they do more harm to the pupils under their care.

Kulasegaran urged the Kedah Education Department and the federal authorities to probe and punish those responsible for the incident in the school in Sungei Petani.