More empty promises from Samy and the MIC?

When several Hindu temples were demolished by the authorities, Samy did little to calm the situation and during the scuffle to defend the temples from being flattened, many devout Hindus were injured.

Eugene Abraham, Malaysian Mirror 

Come Sept 12, MIC president S Samy Vellu’s line-up is hoping to sweep the board in the party elections despite a strong comeback attempt by former deputy president and nemesis S Subramaniam, who was ousted at the 2006 polls.

Subramaniam who was Samy’s deputy for 22 years since the early 1980s was beaten by G Palanivel that year with a 438-vote majority, polling 933 votes against his opponent’s 495.

mic-2.gifSamy reckons that the new echelon of leaders are qualified and better prepared to tackle the nagging problems faced by the Indian community such as unemployment, education, housing and poverty. But his critics feel that delegates should vote for candidates of their choice and not for Samy to pick them and ask the delegates to elect them.

Confident of his men

The president claims that the Sept 12 party election is about the future of the MIC and the Indian community and not the team that he has hand-picked to be elected. He is confident that his men will shape MIC’s future in the coming years and be better prepared for the next general election.

But many Indians ask what Samy and his men have done for the Indian community other than just make empty promises. They are irked that while the Malays and Chinese have made inroads in many fields, the Indians are still lagging far behind and blame MIC for their predicament.

When several Hindu temples were demolished by the authorities, Samy did little to calm the situation and during the scuffle to defend the temples from being flattened, many devout Hindus were injured.

The grassroots want a change in the MIC leadership as they feel that the party needs new faces to champion the cause of the Indians and leaders who will walk the talk. They are just tired of listening to speeches, promises and assurances that never take off the ground!

During the recent Kampong Buah Pala episode, the MIC was never in the picture until the last minute when they offered RM3.2 million to purchase the land for the residents but evidently the deal never took place and the MIC apparently exited the scene leaving the residents in the lurch. 

At MIC meetings, Samy has been accused of hiring thugs to get his way and also silence those who speak up against him.

The Indians are also up in arms against the MIC for not lifting a finger when Universiti Malaya appointed a non-Indian to head the Indian Studies Department recently and earlier this week decided to downgrade the department.

indian-student.jpgThe Indians want to know why Samy has been keeping mum over several outstanding issues when he is the head of the MIC which is a component party of Barisan Nasional. They feel that it is the weakness of the MIC that had led many quarters to take advantage of the Indians as Samy could easily bring up these pressing matters to the government for an amicable solution.

The Maika debacle

The Maika debacle is still fresh in the minds of many Indians who pawned their jewellery and sold their properties to invest in the fund which is now debt-ridden and are pointing an accusing finger at Samy and his cronies.

His critics are also questioning what happened to the RM100 million education fund that Samy said he would be set up to help deserving Indians further their education to become top notch professionals.

Tamil schools in the city and the estates are overcrowded and are in dire need of renovation and repairs as pupils sit on the floor during lessons. Appeals to the MIC for help has gone unanswered and some rich Indian businessmen and well-wishers have come to the aid of these schools.
At the 2008 general elections, MIC representatives including Samy and Palanivel were badly routed by Pakatan Raayat candidates as the Indians frustrated, disillusioned and angry with the MIC and BN over many outstanding social problems cast their votes for the opposition.

It was because of MIC’s inability to meet the Indians demand for a fair share of the economy that eventually gave birth to Hindraf which raised several issues to the BN government resulting in the mammoth rally here on Nov 25, 2007.

indian-community-1.jpgThe Barisan Nasional leadership and Samy’s critics feel that he should hand over the reins of the MIC now to other leaders acceptable to the Indian community and not wait till 2015 when Samy has said that he would retire.

Seat warmers again?

Palanivel who is Samy’s choice for the NO: 2 post was the Deputy Minister in the Women, Family and Community Development Ministry before his defeat in the Hulu Selangor parliamentary seat in the last general election. He will be challenged by Subramaniam and S Sothination, the incumbent vice-president who was the member of Parliament for Teluk Kemang, a parliamentary secretary and a deputy minister.

Among the eight who filed their nomination papers for the three vice-president posts are Human Resources Minister Dr S Subramaniam, Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department SK Devamany and Deputy Federal Territories Minister M Saravanan.

The other five are former Selangor Youth Chief P Subramaniam, Johor MIC treasurer S Balakrishnan, former Federal Territory Chief VKK Teagarajan, KP Samy and P Mariayee.

But despite Samy’s assurance of a better future for the Indian community, his critics have pointed out that Samy has only warmed his seat and not done much during his tenure as the MIC supremo while Umno and MCA have addressed problems relating to the needs and wants of the Malays and the Chinese.