Monday, 3 December 2007

HINDRAF's Demands

I am no political analyst, just an ordinary citizen trying to figure out what's happening in this country. In the wake of the 'Lawyers' march', the 'BERSIH rally' and the 'HINDRAF protest', the question that sticks out is why is there so much disaffection with the present administration? What has gone wrong? Judging from the heavy internet traffic that has converged on the three events on the net, I am inclined to assume that Malaysians have suddenly become politically more active. Or is it just a figment of the imagination? What happened in blogosphere may not necessarily reflect the reality of the Malaysian political scenario. How does the common man feel about the situation in the country? Do they remain untouched, unconcerned about these events that have thrust themselves into the consciousness of the nation? Or do they remain as apathetic as ever, concerning themselves with the daily necessity of working and living? It is however, more likely that the intensity with which these events were reported, discussed, and analysed in blogosphere is a phenomenon that is confined to the urban literates who have access to the net while the rest of the populace, other than saying that it is not good for the country, have remained unruffled by these events .

But the fact that tens of thousands of people who had taken to the streets in the BERSIH and HINDRAF rallies to voice their frustrations has in some measure jolted them from their slumber to take note and understand the issues that confront the nation.

Never in the recent history of this nation have organizers been able to mobilize people in such massive numbers. While the BERSIH rally is to a certain extent multiracial, that of HINDRAF is overwhelmingly of one race. And that has set a precedent that could encourage others to do the same.The HINDRAF rally has also highlighted the failure of existing channels or avenues to deal with disaffection.

The MIC's and the government's reponse to the HINDRAF have been immediate: the setting up of a hotline and a special committee to look into the socio-economic problems of the Indian community. However, they need not have to look far. By examining Ponnusamy Uthayakumar's article posted in the Frontline, MIC would have an inkling of the kinds of problems that have frustrated the community. However, one could take exception to Uthayakumar's claim of 'ethnic cleansing' in Malaysia, the term being used so loosely to include so many things. But I am sure that MIC knows what these problems are, but has little success in solving them. HINDRAF's insistence in directly dealing with UMNO instead of MIC has shown how dismal MIC's track record is in solving problems of the Indian community and it is an uphill task for MIC to regain the trust and confidence of the Indian community that needs help the most.

1 comment:

  1. You have a row of dominoes set up; you knock over the first one, and what will happen to the last one is that it will go over very quickly.
    Dwight D. Eisenhower