Posted in Pakatan

Pakatan’s principles? What principles?

N. Ganesan

I refer to recent media reports where Anwar has gone on record stating that Pakatan will review its recently released Manifesto Rakyat to include five additional pledges to the Indian electorate.

Anwar needs to be given a pat on his back for the courage to admit this large error of omission after so much argument on principle – principle of need based versus race based and principle of policies that transcend race. In this latest outcome those principles did not seem to matter. This entire episode only underlines the fact that much of these decisions really do not so derive from matters of principle as they do from basic political expediency. Otherwise we would not be seeing so speedy a reversal after meeting up with first headwinds.


These latest Pakatan Manifesto pledges do not add up to even a fraction of the proposals in Hindraf’s 5 year Blueprint for the upliftment of the Indian poor. In that sense the pledges are not comprehensive and they will not solve the problems of the Indian poor and marginalized in any permanent way. The inclusion of these specific pledges seem to be more driven by forcefitting into Pakatan’s general plan what is thought of as enough to get in the votes. That is quite a different vision than Hindraf’s.

What Hindraf seeks is a comprehensive program for the permanent resolution of the socio economic woes of the Indians in the country. One that will once and for all settle a longstanding problem and get the Indian poor on a better footing to participate more productively in the life of the nation. The pledges do not come anywhere near these objectives.

The way we see it, these additional pledges in the Pakatan Manifesto serve the purpose for Pakatan to mollify the Indian electorate. As far as Hindraf is concerned it makes very little difference to Hindraf’s position in these elections. And we have made this very clear from the outset of our discussion. Endorse our 5 Year Blue print in a binding way and our total support is yours, there just to be taken.

Why we insist on a binding endorsement is borne out by recent occurrences in Malaysian politics. Take the episode of the 1999 elections, where Mahathir made verbal promises to the Chinese Suqiu organization before the elections on their 17 point demands and then totally reneged on those promises right after the elections . Suqiu, found themselves under threat and could not do anything in response in that episode.

Or take the more recent 2009 Kampung Buah Pala promises made by DAP to make Kampung Buah Pala into an Indian heritage village and then how the villagers were left completely high and dry after the elections. Or take what is happening now in Selangor where the State government is arguing in court that election pledges cannot be binding, in the case against them for the failure to keep election pledges. That makes our case for a binding endorsement.

In summary, Hindraf is waiting for Pakatan to come forth and endorse our 5-year Blueprint in a binding manner for Hindraf to throw all its support behind them. If in their wisdom, Pakatan continues to be intransigent, then they will be responsible should all of this work out adversely for Pakatan and for the people of Malaysia.

The writer N. Ganesan is Hindraf national adviser


Underline and bold emphasis by this blogger. The Hannah Yeoh screenshot is added to the copy also by this blogger, in relation to ‘principles’ — read ‘Game of ping-pong, enjoy!’


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3 thoughts on “Pakatan’s principles? What principles?

  1. no offence to the oldest profession in the world .. but Pakatan has evolved to become so much like a prostitute with STD doing ‘Everything Must Go’ sale, if you ask me!

  2. Mr. N Ganesan writing is full of hopes but unfortunately, Pakatan is a party that has clearly and frequently ‘broke their promises’. I know how bad BN is before but I can see that Najib’s ‘janji ditepati’ is more promising but the real test is yet to come.

    On the other hand, no matter who is the future government, I could not see that either Pakatan or BN is willing to bind any blueprint with Hindraf and just say should none is willing to bind Hindraf’s blueprint, then where will Hindraf’s votes goes to?

    Kindly consider too of how much impact will Hindraf’s votes be?

    Declaring full support to either Pakatan or BN should they agree to bind Hindraf’s blueprint may not be a good way to get a mission accomplished.

    1. Dear Alwie, thank you for your comment. I am not sure if you had the chance to see what the blueprint is but in brief it is to rectify historical wrong against the Malaysian Indians from the plantation workers who has contributed immensely during the yesteryear without any programs or solution in a macro sense when they were displaced.

      Naturally the stateless Malaysian issue is another factor. The Indians you see in an urbanized segment are totally different from those who are invisible. The invisible actually represents 75% of the population similar to our Malay kampung folks.

      The political equation of BN/PR exist based on the peoples’ power. The people power like you and me needs to first understand the grievances of the Malaysian Indians because judging whether it is politically viable makes us no difference from the politicians to sound their artificial trumpet.

      The well being of the society does not lie on the political powers but the people itself when we are ready able and willing to understand the real life predicament of the poorer segment of the Malaysian Indians who neither wield the economical nor political power other than being the kingmaker during the election as swing voters.

      Why I said this is because if you look at GE10 with reformasi, Malays were split but the non Malays supported UMNO, then in GE12, with the uprise of HINDRAF, assuming the Malays were split, the safe votes of Indians swung to the opposition and created what it is today along with the Chinese votes.

      In today’s scenario, everyone is pretty sure that the bulk of the Chinese votes are going to the opposition with the Malays being split and not knowing the direction of the Indian votes and it appears everyone is baiting for it.

      The mission of the HINDRAF blue print is not what is political or race centric but rather we including the non-Indians can accept something needs to be done to flush out the incoherent policies that was not able to address the plight of our fellow Malaysian Indians.

      In that aspect, I think it us the public that needs to work on our senses based on what is moral and dutiful to recognize why it is important rather than worrying whether public appointee like BN or PR who makes a decision what is acceptable and what is not.

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