Sunday, February 27, 2011

Campus Polls Signal Change

The Hindraf rally against Interlok and UMNO’s racism at KLCC petered out before it actually started – for the simple reason that the police acted before they could even come together. 

Still, there were small pockets of protests in a couple of locations in the city – all of which were well-contained by heavy police presence. Police had confirmed that 109 people were arrested, including eight women and two journalists.

Kuala Lumpur police chief Zulkifli Abdullah had thanked leaders from thirteen Indian NGOs for helping the police in warning the Indian community against joining the illegal demonstration. Besides, today’s demo was no big deal because according to Zulkifli, less than 500 people were actually involved.

Muhyiddin Yassin had claimed on February 14, 2011 in Jasin, Malacca that attempts by Hindraf (a.k.a. Human Rights Party) to exploit the Interlok novel issue will not get the support of the majority in the Indian community.

Well, looks like he was right, after all – the Indian community is already disunited and fragmented. Malaysian Indians will experience a grim future if they continue to be like this!

It’s good to read that political activism has returned to our Universities. The recently-concluded student elections, with the fracas in Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) on Thursday had plainly highlighted students’ disenchantment with university authorities.

Leaders of the anti-establishment pro-Mahasiswa group met by The Malaysian Insider on Friday said that the capture of seven of 20 varsities was their best performance since the Reformasi days of the late 1990s. The pro-Mahasiswa faction lobbies for student autonomy instead of government influence and control.

Pro-Mahasiswa leaders also told The Malaysian Insider that they campaigned for the devolving of power to student bodies and the abolition of “oppressive laws that restrict basic human rights” such as the University and University Colleges Act (UUCA), the Internal Security Act (ISA), Sedition Act and the Printing Presses and Publications Act (PPPA).

In 2010, they only held on to their stronghold of Universiti Islam Antarabangsa (UIA) and, even then, by a majority of one in the student council. Hopefully, the gains in this year’s campus polls can benefit Pakatan Rakyat.

Both my football teams fared poorly. Celtic was defeated 0-2 by Motherwell in a disappointing SPL match. And equally disappointing was the EPL match between Liverpool and West Ham, when the former lost 1-3 to the latter.

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