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Don’t take Indians for granted” – Ramasamy warns

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COMMENT BY YB PROF DR P.RAMASAMY, FORMER DEPUTY CHIEF MINISTER II, PENANG

Don’t take Indians for granted

Indians are neither passive or ignorant about their political strength in this country. It is just that they do not have the right,effective and dynamic leadership to tap into their strength and fitness.

Indians have a victorious presence not only in a few constituencies, but in around 60 constituencies, both parliamentary and state.

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India’s turnout is more than 10 percent in some constituencies, in some constituents it’s more than 15 percent, and there are constituencies where Indians have a turnout of more than 20 percent and a few more than 35 percent.

Overall, although India’s population is about 7 or 8 percent of the total population, when it comes to the strength of their elections, they are a force to be reckoned with.

Yes, most Chinese and Indians are with the PH coalition after the changes that happened in 2007. Among Indians, what was previously considered impossible was a mass outflow of support to BN to PR in 2008 and then to PH after 2008 onwards turned out something can be done.

Today, since the race and religion politics by the opposition that is PN, non-Malays have no choice but to vote for PH or the United Government.

The politics of fear or insecurity is mortal in this country. Cannot be taken for granted that non-Malays will always be with PH.
This may change under appropriate political and social circumstances.

I agree that Indians may become the determinants of victory in around 60 constituencies, their voting strength may vary according to their percentage presence in constituencies.
Not that Indians are ignorant of the changing state of the country. In certain challenging circumstances, Indians who have no material loss may be easily radicalized from the Chinese.
2007 Hindraf movement is one example of India’s radicalization for improvement.

There is some history that precedes the Hindraf movement in which Indians fought to death against colonial and post colonial governments.

Majority of Indians in this country are working class concentrated in urban areas.

They may not have the wealth of the Chinese society, but can be radicalized under the right progressive leadership. For over 60 years, Indians trapped in MIC slave political nest became passive communities depending on small allocations from the government.

Indians want reforms to achieve meaningful change for their communities. They are not beggars in this country. Without the sweat and sacrifice of their ancestors, development may be stalled.

Indians cannot be taken for granted that they have no other political choice other than PH. They are interested in the reforms promised by Prime Minister Dato’ Seri Anwar Ibrahim and the Unity Kingdom. Their continued support to DAP and PKR should not be underestimated.

Indians may be against PN extremist politics, but there is no assurance to say that they may not be open to other types of political formations in the future.

It is becoming a challenge for Anwar to address the social and economic needs of Indians. Sweet and loving words may only have a shallow effect.

It’s not that Indians are unaware of the power of their elections or the power to suppress energy for their own good. Those who believe that Indians are passive and lack of the presence of figures to bring meaningful change should only look back at the past history.

Lack of effective and progressive leadership is something lacking in society. The past leadership of Indians in an ethnic or multi-racial political party may not have had the desired impact. Their leaders are too inclined to succumb to the needs of the majority of the society. Indian leaders in MIC are effective in disciplining  Indians without programs beneficial for Indians.

Let us take indian people seriously because they are citizens of the country has contributed a lot to the development and well-being of the country.

Powers that ignore Indians on the basis of race, religion or numerical weaknesses will be condemned to repeat the unpleasant political historical aspects of the country.