PUTRAJAYA, May 18- The MIC respected the prime minister’s decision to appoint Hindu Rights Action Force (Hindraf) chairman P.Waythamoorthy as a deputy minister although the party held a different view, said MIC deputy president Datuk Seri Dr S.Subramaniam.
Hence, he urged the Indian community including MIC members to accept the appointment of the 47-year-old lawyer.
He said Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak must have had certain reasons to bring in the Hindraf leader who was once a strong opponent and vocal critic of the Barisan Nasional (BN) government and MIC for purportedly not looking after the lot of the Indian community.
“The matter (Waythamoorthy’s appointment) was not discussed with us (MIC) and it came as a surprising news for us.
“Well, he (Najib) had made the decision, although our views are different (and) there have been reactions from the Indian community. So, we have to honour and respect him (Najib), and we need to accept Waythamoorthy.”
Dr Subramaniam said this after attending a farewell reception for him and former human resources deputy minister Datuk Maznah Mazlan, hosted by the ministry, here, today.
Dr Subramaniam, who retained the Segamat seat in the recent 13th general election, has been appointed as Health Minister, while Maznah retained the Muadzam Shah state seat in Pahang.
He said what was important now was Waythamoorthy’s willingness to work as a team with MIC in the interest of the Indian community in particular, and the people as a whole.
“It is very important that we can work as a group. I hope the MIC members too will accept the PM’s decision (on Waythamoorthy),” he added.
The Kelantan-born Waythamoorthy is the first Indian leader from an Indian-based civil society organisation to be appointed as deputy minister.
On April 18 this year, Hindraf and BN signed a memorandum of understanding covering six main issues with the aim of bringing poor Indians into the country’s mainstream development.