Contrary to PKR leaders R Sivarasa and Xavier Jayakumar's claim, the letter shows that Sime Darby awarded 15 acres of land to the ex-Bukit Jalil estate workers.
B Nantha Kumar, FMT
An ex-plantation worker has taken two PKR leaders to task for allegedly “cheating” former Bukit Raja estate workers of the land allocated to them. P Mathialakan, 55, claimed that Subang MP R Sivarasa and Selangor exco Dr Xavier Jayakumar were responsible for the land fiasco.
Contrary to the two politicians’ claim, a document provided to FMT showed that plantation giant Sime Darby had agreed to provide 15 acres to build houses for the ex-plantation workers.
The letter, dated June 12, 2008, from law firm Daim & Gamany headed by Sivarasa to Shearn Delamore & Co urged the latter’s client (Sime Darby) to reconsider the initial RM80,000 price tag for the houses which was considered too expensive as well as to look into redesigning the houses so that the properties could be sold for a lower price.
It is learnt that Sivarasa acted on behalf of the ex-plantation workers while Jayakumar handled the matter for the state after Pakatan Rakyat took over Selangor in 2008.
On May 15, FMT quoted Mathialakan as claiming that the state government had allegedly diverted eight of the 15 acres for a luxury housing project.
He added that in 2007, the Barisan Nasional-led Selangor government allocated 15 acres of land to build houses for the former Bukit Raja estate workers.
Later, Jayakumar disputed the land size that was awarded to the ex-estate workers despite PKR Kapar MP S Manikavasagam admitting that Sime Darby allocated 15 acres.
Jayakumar, who is also the Seri Andalas assemblyman, clarified that the 78 former estate workers wanted landed property and the court ruled in their favour.
Sivarasa had also echoed Jayakumar’s statement and had promised FMT to clarify the issue but nothing had come forth so far.
Speaking to FMT, Mathialakan said the latest letter was “solid evidence” that Sime Darby allocated 15 acres.
“The former estate workers are so upset after being ‘betrayed’ by the two PKR Indian leaders,” he said.
“We are not interested in any ‘political game’. Please give us back the 15 acres,” he added.
Mathiakalan also revealed that Jayakumar previously met the former plantation workers to express his idea to build a student hostel in the land.
“He told us that the state government is planning to build a student hostel in the eight acres to benefit the Tamil school pupils. The hostel was supposed to be named after him.
“However, we rejected the idea. There are thousands of empty land in Selangor which are suitable to build hostels. Why are they eyeing our land?” he asked.