Friday, 10 August 2012

Victorious Return of HINDRAF Leader –Waytha Moorthy Struggle for the Rights and Dignity of the Oppressed Communities Continues - Photo-illustrations (Appendix : Video clip from CJ.MY)

Victorious Return of HINDRAF Leader –  Waytha Moorthy
Struggle for the Rights and Dignity of the Oppressed Communities Continues

Photo-illustrations / Video clip from CJ.MY

(This text is translated from the original Chinese version released on 8 Aug 2012)

Early July this year, Hindu Rights Action Force (HINDRAF) announced that Waytha Moorthy, their chairman who had lived in exile in Britain since the end of November 2007 decided to return home on the 1 August. This was after he filed a class action suit in London High Court on 2 July , against the UK government to recover the rights and dignity of the marginalized Indian communities in Malaysia. Waytha Moorthy has been trying to gain attention and support of the international community for HINDRAF in its struggle for the past 5 years. 

There is a leaflet containing his statement distributed in the Indian community, especially among the poor. Words such as "HINDRAF wants the safe return of Waytha Moorthy - the visionary and fearless leader of the marginalized Indian community!" and “Strive for the new democratic revolution!"

All ethnic groups and political parties are closely monitoring two issues: 1. Will Waytha Moorthy return to homeland safely? 2. After his return, what is his vision as well as that of HINDRAF about the future?

At about 12 noon on 1 August , Waytha Moorthy together with his wife and daughter, accompanied by leaders and supporters from Johor and nationwide, were about to return home. In five cars, 20 of them arrived from Singapore at the Johor Bahru Immigration Checkpoint.



【1】The photo (left) was taken when Waytha Moorthy was leaving Singapore. He answered questions by the officer at the immigration checkpoint before he entered Malaysia. The photo (right) shows Waytha Moorthy (second from right) talking to Ganesan, HINDRAF advisor, while awaiting immigration officers to return his passport. He was accompanied by his wife and daughter at the Johor Bahru Customs, Immigration and Quarantine complex (CIQ). After checking his passport, the customs officer told Waytha Moorthy: "You are wanted by the government". He was asked to meet the senior officer in the office for further questions. He flatly refused. He was then requested to wait at the car, while the officer left the counter to seek further instructions from his superior. Waytha Moorthy took the opportunity to put on the orange-coloured T-shirt specially made by HINDRAF. About 30 minutes later, his passport was returned to him. He had his smooth return to Malaysia.




【2】After entering Johor Bahru, Mr Waytha Moorthy, accompanied by Ganesan (middle) and Sambulingam, Hindraf National Coordinator, held a media conference in Austin Hill Golf Resort. According to him, upon arriving at Singapore on 29 July, he went to the Malaysian High Commission on the following day, to apply and obtain his passport. He was able to return to Malaysia with dignity.

According to Mr Waytha Moorthy, issuance of his passport indicates that the allegation made by the government that Hindraf is a terrorist group is unfounded, that outlawing Hindraf is unjustified. The false allegation should be rectified immediately. Hindraf should be free to operate. He further claimed that as an Indian of Malaysian origin, he does not feel that he is a free man. Independence means freedom, and freedom means freedom for all. Belonging to the fifth generation of Malaysian Indians, he feels that his fore fathers were recolonised by the new Malayan government led by Tunku Abdul Rahman from Umno in 1957. Mr Waytha Moorthy is of the view that, though Malaysia has been independent for half a century, the Indian community continues to be marginalized. (Source: http://hindraf.org/news-statements/639-hindraf-1st-chapter-closed.html)

Upon his return, Mr Waytha Moorthy claims that the struggle for Hindraf enters a new stage, which focuses on impressing upon the government to make a serious effort to deal with the plight of the Indian community, and to provide a permanent and comprehensive solution to the pressing issue. He is referring to both the BN as well as the Pakatan governments. They are expected to implement the necessary policy to help the marginalized Indian community. (Source: http://hindraf.org/news-statements/641-2nd-chapter-begins-finding-the-cure.html)




【3】A warm welcome by an assembly of about 400 people for Moorthy on his safe return. It was held by HINDRAF Johor at Karumariamman temple at Jalan Kota Tinggi in Ulu Tiram at 6 pm. HINDRAF supporters had put up banners as well as HINDRAF flags to welcome the victorious return of their visionary and fearless leader since 4 pm. The banners read "HINDRAF is the voice for the voiceless, oppressed, suppressed and marginalized – We care for their human rights, not mercy by ruling elites”, "We seek equality in rights and dignity – give us equal opportunity", "We have awakened. Stop oppression and racial segregation" etc. They clearly expressed the legitimate position and reasonable demands of HINDRAF and the oppressed.


【4】7 members of FOS (all ethnic Chinese) together with two members of the Persahabatan Semparuthi, were present to welcome Mr Waytha Moorthy. They carried two banners both in Chinese and in English, bearing the message: “Johore NGOs: We fight for the rights and dignity of the oppressed community”. In addition to expressing our support for Mr. Waythmoorthy and his struggle, as members of FOS Johor, a grassroots NGO striving for democracy and human rights, we wish to take this opportunity to indicate to Mr. Waytha Moorthy and other Hindraf leaders our expectations of the mission of Mr. Waytha Moorthy and Hindraf.

Despite our limited resources and capability, we sincerely hope that we may be able to contribute by working together with Hindraf in Johor in the struggle for the rights and dignity of the oppressed community, and to proffer our views and thoughts on the new democratic revolution for the people from all ethnic groups (including the Indian community).

Although the aims and objectives of the struggle of Hindraf have been constantly questioned, criticized or even sabotaged by certain quarters, we hope that Hindraf will remain steadfast and unite all those who are against UMNO hegemony, racism, and for democracy and human rights, so as to achieve the common goal of working for the rights and dignity of the marginalized Indian community. Only then can Hindraf thrive and unite people of all ethnic communities.



【5】At 5:30 pm, Waytha Moorthy arrived at the scene. The long-awaited leader was immediately warmly greeted by HINDRAF members and supporters. They swarmed around to greet him, shake hands with him and take photos together. He came towards our two banners. He then greeted FOS Johor working committee members and shook hands with all of us. We congratulated Waytha Moorthy on his victorious return. It was a memorable scene. It was a pity that we had not much time to talk to him as the welcoming ceremony was about to start.



【6】The welcoming event started at about 6 pm. It was chaired by Y. Mohan (holding the microphone) Hindraf Makkal Sakthi Johor Coordinator, Sambulingam (2nd from left) National coordinator, Waytha Moorthy (3rd from right) Hindraf’s Chair , and Ganesan (2nd from right) Hindraf’s advisor, delivered their speeches in turn. The rest are Suresh Grover (1st from right, in black shirt) and Ram Narayanan (1st from left, in white shirt), Hindraf’s lawyers from UK.

The event was conducted in Tamil language.



【7】Waytha Moorthy gave the audience a brief account of his work abroad, and analyse the root cause of the poverty of the Indian community and challenges faced by Hindraf. The salient points of Waytha Moorthy’s speech taken down by Santa, representative from Persahabatan Semparuthi are as follows:

Waytha Moorthy said that on 25 November 2007, Hindraf intended to present a memorandum on the plight of the Indian community to the British High Commission. But the Hindraf group was brutally suppressed by the BN government, fearing that the plight of the Malaysian Indian community might be made known to the world at large. He then had to leave Malaysia and carried on Hindraf’s struggle from abroad. Since the 2007 movement, Hindraf developed into a force to be reckoned with.

For three and a half years, he gathered a lot of evidence from South India, Britain and other countries showing how the South Indians were given attractive promises and brought to Malaya. As an example, they were supposed to work in plantations. But, once they arrived in Malaya, they were despatched to clear jungles and laid all the infrastructure works. Many of them died of hard labour, poverty and sickness.

They were promised a minimum of 5 acres of land each. But the British did not keep their promises. Instead, their travelling expenses for the voyage to Malaya had to be deducted from their meagre wages. In order to keep the Indians in the plantations permanently, the British built small temples, simple schools, child care centres and toddy shops. The minimum working age was reduced from 18 to 12 years. Even after independence, the existence and future of these poor Indians were not given any due attention.

Although they are free from the British colonial rule, they now come under the Malaysian colonial domination. They have no direct access to the government for solution of their problems. They can only rely on their leaders (the community leaders) for assistance. The struggle waged by Hindraf has brought them awareness and courage. The BN government tried to portray Hindraf as a terrorist group, but the Indian community would not buy it. Now, they have realized the root cause of our plight. The next step is for Hindraf to take steps to deal with their problems.

Mr Moorthy finally pointed out that the BN and Pakatan are now in control of the political power. It is their responsibility to attend to the needs of the Indian community.
The expectations of the press are different from those of the Indian community. The press wants to know the parties Hindraf will support in the coming election. But the Indian community are expecting how Hindraf would solve their problems.



【8】The welcoming event ended at about 7 pm. All attendees stood up and sang the theme song of Hindraf - Tholvi Nilayena Ninaithaal. The song originated from a Tamil movie entitled "Oomai Vizhigal" filmed in 1986. Its contents are as follows:

If you think defeat is permanent, then how can you face life?
Why do we think that life is a burden, and trample on the dreams of our predecessors?

We may have lost our rights, our possessions, but how can we let go of our spirit and will?
How can we forget the dream that fueled our spirit and intellectual growth?

Dawn is not far off, why is there heaviness in your heart?
Your heart is full of courage, why then are your eyes wet?

Let there be wars, let there be bloodshed, but you should not change your paths.
In the heat of blood, let all the fear burn, our principles should not die.

After singing the song, everyone left reluctantly.



【9】Lastly, Mr. Waytha Moorthy, Suresh Grover (Hindraf's solicitor in the UK), some FOS members, and some Hindraf supporters took a photo in front of the banner "Johore NGOs: We fight for the rights and dignity of the oppressed communities". Starting from 3rd, left: Goh Chee Horng, Liang Peck Kuan, Loo Ah Looi, Chen Xin, Waytha Moorthy, Ang Pei Shan, Suresh Grover.

Mr. Waytha Moorthy and other Hindraf leaders were very happy to see us at the welcoming ceremony, particularly when we had prepared the eye-catching banners written in Chinese and English. They were also grateful to Friends of Suaram Johor for identifying ourselves with the cause of Hindraf, and for giving it the necessary support. Hindraf hoped to have closer co-operation with us in the future. Hindraf’s solicitor from UK highly appreciated the media statement issued by FOS entitled "Waytha Moorthy be allowed to return safely."

We thought that we could have the opportunity to have longer discussion with Mr. Waytha Moorthy, so as to further our understanding of the "new democratic revolution" proposed by Hindraf. If possible, we shall put forward our points of view for consideration by Mr Moorthy. We also hope to exchange views with him, on the basis of resolving differences and strengthening unity, about how to launch a counter offensive against the BN ruling clique dominated by UMNO for carrying out the national oppression and national assimilation policies.

We are of the view that the BN ruling clique dominated by UMNO is the main object or target of our struggle at the present stage of our social political movement. All ethnic communities, classes, political parties, civil groups, and individuals who are opposed to the UMNO hegemony, regardless of colour or skin, religion, gender and status, should be united and brought into our fold.

We must let it be known to the world at large that we are all for the unity of the absolute majority of the people in our fight against the UMNO hegemony.

As Mr. Waytha Moorthy and company had to drive home to Seremban for another meeting, we have to end our discussion, and look forward to the next opportunity of meeting him again.


Video clip of the welcoming ceremony from CJ.MY


Note: Click the button above()to watch the video clip.

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