By : JOE FERNANDEZ
THE DEPARTURE of the British administrators from Malaya in 1957, ostensibly giving independence to the country, meant nothing to the Indian Nation.
Indians soon found that they had exchanged one colonial master for another, from the British to the Malay-speaking communities drawn from the Bugis, Javanese, Minang, Acehnese, Arab Muslims and Indian Muslims, among others. This was the Malay Nation, a people without territory in Singapore, Malaya, south Thailand, Sri Lanka, Madagascar and South Africa.
From the scourge of external colonisation, Indians have been experiencing internal colonisation since 1957, a crime under international law. Incidentally, it was internal colonisation by Khartoum which eventually led to South Sudan breaking away from Sudan with the blessing of the UN Security Council.
On that score alone, internal colonisation, Umno/BN is the sworn eternal and mortal enemies of the Indian Nation in Malaysia. It’s neither possible to forgive nor forget what Umno/BN has done to the Indians.
It’s not possible for Indians to do business, purely on moral grounds, with this evil coalition which has squatted on Indians more than half a century.
Indians must seize the moral high ground and reject Umno/BN completely
The last General Election, the 12th, was a watershed for Indians when the makkal sakthi – people power in Tamil – wave generated by Hindraf Makkal Sakthi unleashed a political tsunami and installed Opposition Governments, formed by the Pakatan Rakyat (PR), in five states in Malaya and handed it Kuala Lumpur.
Alas, PR did little to roll back the policies institutionalized by 56 years of internal colonisation under Umno and its running dogs, the Barisan Nasional (BN). Neither is the Opposition making any attempts this time to woo the Indians despite 85 per cent of them voting against the BN in 2008. PR belabours under the delusion that Indians would automatically vote for them, having broken with BN the last time.
This 13th GE, Indians are in a league all by themselves, having not even one ethnic-majority seat in any legislature, despite nearly a million of them on the electoral rolls.
The community must seize the moral high ground and have nothing to do with the BN which, as the last GE proved, doesn’t really need Indian votes to keep Putrajaya. Umno is more concerned about denying Indian votes to the Opposition and in return has offered the prospect of throwing some crumbs directly at the community instead of routing these through their political mandores in MIC and PPP. PR meanwhile has enthusiastically embraced the political mandore system being abandoned by Umno/BN.
PKR, the glue that holds Dap and Pas together in PR, was formed by the losing side after the proverbial falling out of thieves in Umno. Its aim is to replace Umno in the Federal Government.
New faces can be given the benefit of the doubt
Dap meanwhile has done a good job of wooing the urban and Chinese voters away from BN, on the verge of collapse on the eve of the GE.
Umno can no longer afford to give BN the seats where the Malays form the single biggest community but still less than 50 per cent. PR is set to sweep these seats from BN and Umno thinks it will have a better chance than its lapdog to retain the Malay voters.
Indians, having burnt their bridges with PR in the aftermath of 2008, have no reason to worry about the fate of the Opposition Alliance no matter what’s in store for them. It’s for the non-Indian urban and Chinese voters to save PR as their best vehicle to bring them to power in Putrajaya.
Indians must walk a lonely path in politics, even one that involves a spell in the cold or wilderness.
The community can give new faces, making their electoral debut in the 13th GE, the benefit of the doubt provided they endorse the Hindraf Blueprint. If both BN and PR candidates in a particular seat endorse the Blueprint, it’s for the voters in that locality to decide among themselves which candidate appears more credible.
On balance, it would be difficult for Indians to endorse BN new faces given the ugly history of the coalition.
Alternatively, they can root for a 3rd candidate if there’s one in the fray, provided the Blueprint is endorsed.
Not in Indian interest to see PR fail and crumble
If Hindraf fields candidates, probably under one common symbol and flag, Indians should naturally vote for this NGO as it offers them the best hope for the future. Indians decide in 67 parliamentary seats, and the related state seats, in Malaya. It’s likely that Hindraf, win or lose, will garner more Indian votes than BN and PR combined and especially from among the underclass.
Hindraf and the new faces aside, Indians should vote against all incumbents. They can do this, not by abstaining or boycotting, but spoiling the ballots in protest against their marginalisation and disenfranchisement. Hopefully, there will be one million spoilt ballots to earn a place in world history and focus the attention of the international community and the UN on the plight of the Indian Nation in Malaysia.
Abstaining has been mentioned as a weapon so that the winners will know why they won i.e. the Indians didn’t vote against them. The losers will know why they lost i.e. the Indians didn’t vote for them.
If the last GE is any guide, the winners in this case would be the BN and PR the losers. It’s the PR which needs Indian votes, not the BN.
Does the Indian community really want to see PR losing all its states? That would only strengthen Umno/BN, the sworn enemies of the Indian Nation, and make it all the more difficult to remove this scourge which has been plaguing the nation the last half century and more.
Ketuanan Melayu the great barrier to Indian advancement
Or should it take the position that the enemy (PR) of my enemy (Umno/BN) is my friend even if not so friendly.
Is it really in the Indian interest to see the return of BN stronger than ever or would it be more strategic to keep giving PR the chances that it obviously doesn’t deserve but only until the ruling coalition has been driven out from Putrajaya? The only reason that Umno/BN is being respectful towards the Indians is because of the presence of PR. If PR is no longer around, Umno/BN will ignore the Indians once more like before 2008.
Some would say that there’s method in madness if the Indians turn to the Opposition once again after having installed PR in Putrajaya. The odds are against the opposition peacefully assuming power in Malaysia as there are no free and fair elections in the country and it may be virtually impossible to overthrow BN through the ballot box.
Indians can have no part in Government unless and until the Sapu Bersih deviations and distortions of Article 153 in the Federal Constitution and the NEP are ended; the issue of statelessness dealt with; anti non-Malay minorities administrative laws be scrapped; Islam kept in its proper perspective as per Article 3 of the Federal Constitution which doesn’t mention any official religion; the intrusion of Syariah and the Syariah Courts into civil law ended; forced and bogus conversions to Islam be outlawed; the bogus conversion of non-Muslims to Islam upon marring Muslims be outlawed; and Muslims be allowed to leave Islam without the sanction of the Syariah Court.
That’s unlikely to happen as long as Umno continues its policy of ketuanan Melayu (Malay political domination and supremacy) -- a sick combination of Apartheid, Nazism, and Fascism, Communism, Political Islam and the caste system which allows no upward social mobility – driven by racism, prejudice and opportunism.
Now is not the time to play the devil’s advocate. Hindraf Makkal Sakthi must announce its unconditional support for PR come the 13th GE although it has vowed No Free Votes.
It’s more important for Indians at this stage to think about punishing, and even destroying Umno and BN, than to worry about what they can get out of a PR Government in Putrajaya.