Who Caused the Neglect of the Indian Community?

Would you still stand hand in hand with the man who single handedly marginalised the entire Indian community?

Perumal Sakthi

Its rather surprising to read the comments made by our ex MP of Teluk Intan Mr. M Manogaran, Batu Kawan MP Kasthuri Patto and Penang DCM Prof Ramasamy on the Malaysian Indian Blueprint (MIB). They have quickly glanced through the document and cherry picked pointers for their political expediency. The usual manner of which our opposition leaders have been representing us against the Government in recent times. Quite disappointing to know that these are the generals moulded by our great Karpal Singh. It surely lacks the punch Mr Karpal would have brought to the fore.

As an Indian, do we not encourage any effort by the government nor opposition for the community’s advancement? Do we pour scorn even before it starts to deliver results? Can we not be divided by political motives and come together for the gains that have been listed in the blueprint? Can we now stand together and demand for delivery of all the targets in MIB?

Clearly these DAP Indian leaders are shooting the question at the wrong Prime Minister. If our memory serves us right, the current partner of DAP aka the defacto leader of Pakatan Harapan was the Prime Minister for 22 years, in which period the decline of the Malaysian Indian community accelerated. I wonder why when Tun Mahathir was the Prime Minister not a single blueprint nor any plan was put forth to address challenges or the neglect faced by the Indian Community.

Now you are celebrating him and his leadership within Pakatan. All of a sudden his sins have washed away and PM Najib is being blamed for the community’s plight. Lets rewind back the clock. Firstly the documentation misery started at Tun M’s helm; The reducing number of Indians in civil service started in his reign. We the Indians were systematically marginalized under his watch. And now these DAP leaders stand with him to bring transformation to Malaysia?! Do you want to push the community back into decline again?  Is it not a betrayal of the Indian Community? What have you got to say about this?

Ok now lets look at the facts;

  1. Najib mentioned in his speech that MIB was announced in 2015 and it has taken 2 years for its development. From the graphs and the flawless presentation of the document, one would assume that whoever drew up the document has indeed led an exhaustive effort to tabulate and research the issues and frame up realistic goals to uplift the community.
  1. Here they call the MIB a carrot for GE14. Let me clarify something here, for far too long, political rhetoric and chest thumping was the order of the day. Instant gratification to win votes was exactly what we the Indians are fed up of. If it was to win over votes in GE14, Najib could have placed a timeline of 1-2 years and splurge obscene amount money to facelift the community. Which would have had the intended effect of increasing Indian votes come GE14, but he went for a more responsible approach of a long term solution to address the under representation and under performance of Indians compared to other races, be it in education, employment or wealth.
  1. Whatever happened to Gelang Patah Declaration that was presented during GE13? Was it not an election gimmick to dupe the Indians to vote for DAP? Answer me dear YB’s. Why the DAP’s very own Gelang Patah Declaration has not moved an inch of the dusty shelves of your offices. Maybe before pointing out why a document that was just released will fail, one should mention the progress of the 14 points highlighted in the declaration which was announced almost 5 years ago.
  1. We have to acknowledge the fact that PM Najib started intervening directly into Indian affairs since 2009. MIB is not a sudden intervention as described by our YB’s here. Since 2009, the Government has made both bold commitments and significant inroads towards addressing these challenges. Policies and mechanisms have already been launched under the aegis of Cabinet Committee on Indian Participation in Government Programs and Projects (CCIC). There were 4 new units/organisations which were set up to deal with ICBC (SITF), Business (SEED), SJKT’s (PTST) and overall socio economic empowerment (SEDIC).
  1. With regards to the Civil Service employment of Indians, winding down the clock, Malaysian Indians were once celebrated front-runners in the service sector. From health care to education, Indians were leaders, directors, and held numerous prominent positions in government service. Unfortunately, things took a sharp turn after 1981 when Tun Mahathir became Prime Minister. Over time, prominent positions in government service were slowly taken away from Malaysian Indians.
  1. While the opposition’s priority and main modus operandi is to counter-check the government, they should not hold on to the mantra of opposing everything and anything. They should give credit when credit is due. Interestingly, nobody mentions the appointment of Dato Indera Subromaniam Tholasy to the post of Director-General of Malaysian Customs by the current administration headed by PM Najib.
  1. Have the opposition states placed a quota to increase Indians in their state administration? Please let us know. At least PM has pledged 7% intake into Civil Service in his speech at the MIB launch. FYI, the top 3 civil servants in Malaysia speak fluent Tamil according to PM. The Chief Secretary, Secretary General of the Treasury and the Director General of Public Service Department.
  1. Dear YB’s, to enhance the delivery of the said targets, The existing SEDIC Unit (Socioeconomic Development of Indian Community Unit) will be expanded, restructured and its mandate to be changed to assume a new role as the MIB implementation entity. The roles and functions of the existing special units, i.e. SITF, SEED and PTST, to match the scope of the new SEDIC sub-units, with official Government positions to be created within the restructured SEDIC.
  1. The differentiating factor of Malaysian Indian Blueprint (MIB) is the Governance function which will be set up. The yearly targets of the MIB will be monitored and annually audited by an independent monitoring body and tabled to the Executive Board. This strategy will effectively combat the longevity issue faced by other initiatives.
  1. A Consultative and Advisory Board will be established, which comprises of leaders in civil society, political representatives, research, commerce and social enterprise to ensure active and close ties with community stakeholders.
  1. CCIC meeting would be held every quarter, where the Director-General of SEDIC will present the progress of the implementation and any major roadblocks faced in implementation of the Blueprint for our deliberation and resolution.

Now the question is back at you YB’s…. Who caused the neglect of the Indian Community? Would you still stand hand in hand with the man who single handedly marginalised the entire Indian community. Or would you stand by the Blueprint which is at least trying to uplift the community.