Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Press Statement by M Kula Segaran, DAP National Vice Chairman and MP for Ipoh Barat in Ipoh on 25thJanuary, 2017
Call on the government to seriously consider an amnesty programme to resolve the long standing issue of stateless Indians born before Independence
Indians being stateless is a long standing issue that has not been addressed and resolved by the BN government and thus the pains suffered by these people have continued.
Many felt relieved when on August 7 last year, the Prime Minister Najib Razak gave his assurance that he would work towards resolving the issue of citizenship faced by stateless Indians  who were born before the country’s Independence.
“We will solve this in appreciation of the sacrifice of the Indian community who have contributed to the development of the country,” he said when launching MIC’s 70th anniversary celebrations
However, a few days ago,  the Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister Datuk Zahid Hamidi said that there will not be flexibility for the stateless Indians to obtain citizenship.
Zahid’s remarks are most disappointing and demoralizing for those who have been waiting to become citizens. I have responded by saying that Zahid should treat the applications on a case to case basis.
There are cases which involve technical issues and they certainly require flexibility. The fastest way to resolve the long standing plight for those stateless Indians born before Independence will be via an amnesty programme. I call on the government to seriously consider such a programme.
I am most shocked that Pusat Aduan Rakyat Malaysia (PAR) Malaysia President Datuk A. Chandrakumanan has claimed that I have taken Zahid’s speech out of context to provoke and instigate the Indians against the government.
Could he explain firstly how have I taken Zahid’s remarks out of context and secondly since when has he become spokesperson for the Deputy Prime Minister?
I must strongly condemn Chandrakumanan’s accusation that I had raised the issue to provoke the Indians.
As a Member of Parliament who has been bringing up this issue inside and outside the Parliament, I must speak up when Zahid has taken an approach that will not be able to effectively, massively and quickly resolve the long standing issue.
It is Chandrakumanan’s right and choice to want to suck up to the Home Minister, but he must not in doing so, make baseless and unfair allegations and attacks against me or the Opposition
On his accusation that DAP has done nothing on the issue, let me inform Chandrakumanan that the DAP led Penang state government has got a special unit to assist stateless Indians and those who are red IC holders. This was set up to tackle the issue although it is a Federal Government obligation.
I will advise him not to simply open his mouth in future.

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