2:17PM Mar 25, 2012
The Hindu Rights Action Force (Hindraf) brought watermelons to a protest at the Prime Minister Office (PMO) in Putrajaya today to press home how the BN government has broken the Indian community’s trust.
Playing on the wordnambikei (trust) earlier used by Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak to woo the minority community, Hindraf said the Indian’s nambikei has been smashed on the ground like tembikai(Malay for watermelon).
In the second such rally this year, over 100 Indians converged in Putrajaya at about 10am, requesting a meeting with the PM on the group’s 18-point demand to solve issues concerning their commuity.
During the rally, Hindraf leaders held up a watermelon with nambikeiwritten on it.
Hindraf de facto leader P Uthayakumar (above, far right) said the PMO on March 22 acknowledged their meeting request for either Najib, or in his absence, his political secretary.
They were however disappointed today when Putrajaya OCPD told Uthayakumar that no one from PMO could meet him.
Upset, Uthayakumar led the crowd to chant "Umno racist" before smashing the watermelon on the ground.
"Our nambikei on you (Najib) has been smashed like thistembikai," he said.
Najib had bandied the Tamil term around during his Thaipusam speech at Batu Caves in February, in an attempt to encourage Indians to support him saying that would enable him to assist the community.
However Uthayakumar considered the no-show by Najib today as a clear indication that BN government will not address Indian concerns.
"We have asked him to send an official if he could not meet us, but not one of them is interested in Indian problems.
"We have lost confidence in Umno’s rule of Putrajaya. Down Umno!" he said, leading the protesters in another chant.
"Never mind, this is the last time we are going to see them in Putrajaya. (Come the next general election), Umno will be chased out from Putrajaya," Uthayakumar said to the applauding crowd.
‘Incoming prime minister’
The former ISA detainee also announced that Hindraf was ready to hold another round of talks with opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim, whom he called "the incoming prime minister".
"We are going to meet Anwar on April 22 in Klang and we will ask him to tell the Indian community what can he do for them, What Pakatan has done for the Indians.
"His answer will determine our strategy in the coming general election," he said.
Hindraf had stageda similar protest last month demanding the Najib government recognise their 18-point demand andurimai (rights) of the Indians.
The demand, Hindraf argued, were for basic rights that would help uplift the Indian community.
A document outlining the 18-points was handed to then prime minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi in 2007, and it was a key factor in leading to the Hindraf rally in November that year.
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