But the opposition coalition must first endorse Hindraf’s blueprint on alleviating the Indian community’s problems.
Anisah Shukry, FMT
Hindraf has offered Pakatan Rakyat “thousands of volunteers” which it says is crucial for the opposition pact to overthrow Barisan nasional in the upcoming general election.
The ‘carrot’ however comes with a catch.
Pakatan must endorse the group’s six-point blueprint to “bring the Indian marginalized and poor into the mainstream of National Development”, said Hindraf chairperson P Waythamoorthy.
“We are no doubt willing to make Pakatan’s dream to capture Putrajaya a reality but we have a dream too – we dream to find a permanent solution to the problems of the Indian poor and marginalized.
“Hence it is crucial that Pakatan endorses the Hindraf Blueprint which encompassed this dream before we activate thousands of our volunteers to go nationwide to campaign for Pakatan,” Waythamoorthy said in a statement yesterday.
The movement had previously said that it would support any political organisation that would agree in writing to adopt the blueprint, which recommends a five-year programme aimed at the betterment of the Malaysian Indian community.
The six points of the blueprint are:
1) Stop displacing Indian plantation workers and provide reasonable compensation as well as offer skills training to them;
2) Resolve Indian stateless issue;
3) Provide equal education opportunities to all Indian students via meritocracy;
4) Provide equal job and business opportunities to Indians;
5) Stop police brutality and death in custody, and set up the Independent Police Complaints and Misconduct Commission (IPCMC); and
6) Stop institutionalised racism and ratify United Nations convention against racial discrimination.
But the blueprint appears to have been largely ignored by parties from both sides of the divide since it was launched on Nov 25 last year.
Thus far only Parti Sosialis Malaysia (PSM), a Pakatan-leaning party, has announced its support for the six demands.
“It is in the interest of PR (Pakatan) to sign the blueprint soonest rather than hoping that Hindraf would compromise on its Blueprint program at the last minute,” said Waythamoorthy.
“We are ready to activate our machinery and start joint campaigns with Pakatan the moment there is a signed agreement,” he added.
Indians on the fence
Waythamoorthy added that almost 50% of Indian voters were still undecided on whom to cast their ballots for, and said this was because Hindraf had not declared its support for any party.