PETALING JAYA: “I want all the Tamils to come here now! We need your support today. We have been silent for too long ...”
That was part of a message I received when I opened my Instagram account on that fateful morning of Nov 27, the day of the temple riot.
A few things crossed my mind then:
1) Don’t these people have work to go to?
2) Why are Indians still fighting for temples rather than schools?
3) When will all this unnecessary talk end?
4) Who are all these artists, politicians and so-called people with influence jumping on this bandwagon?
6) Who do these people plan to attract with those statements and what was their plan?
It is great that they all have removed the videos now, a contradictory move from what they preached that night, after the cowardly attack on brave firefighter Muhammad Adib Mohd Kassim, 24, who succumbed to his injuries on Dec 19.
This “let’s fight for our temple” and “our temple is our right” issue has been going on for too long in Malaysia.
I share the same empathy when I say it is not fair to demolish a place of worship which you and your family have called home for years.
However, it is only fair that someone brings up what am I going to say now.
Let me take the Brickfields area in Kuala Lumpur as an example.
There are some three to five temples in a 10 km radius there.
Even in Shah Alam - a Muslim majority area - there are at least six Hindu temples in a 7km radius of the city, says a mate of mine.
Non-Hindu readers will, of course, wonder why there are so many temples.
Well, the reason is temples are built according to the deity worshipped, the caste you are from or dialect you speak.
There are temples specifically for the Malayalees, the Telugus, the Ceylonese, and so on.
With that in mind, now you do the figures.
We, Indians, divide ourselves when it comes to temples and worshipping but will then somehow bring forth destruction when the same place we have to protect is threatened.
It is just an act of contradictory principles, and an act where everyone has only their personal agenda on their mind.
What the perpetrators of the Nov 26 and 27 incidents failed to consider is that the destruction caused by the people they invited, by playing and rooting for racial sentiments, had serious ramifications.
Maybe these people should learn to act their age and not their shoe size!
The loss of innocent life is uncalled for. The irony can’t be lost on anyone that a life was taken away at a place that’s supposed to give life, protect life.
From the invention of the concept of zero around 458 AD in India by a mathematician named Aryabhata to achieving nothing, from inventing the game of chess to checkmating ourselves, where are we heading?
However, that’s not the point I am trying to make.
My point is, where were all the temple enthusiasts when Indian kids were beaten up by their drunken fathers, raped by their uncles, given away to others by their mothers, or left starving by the orphanage?
When are we going to fight for more relevant things for the people of Malaysia, let alone the Indian community?
Next time, before shouting “Tamizhan da!”, one must sit back and think: “Are we really fighting for the betterment of our community?”
Let’s all live in peace as Malaysians. After 60 over years we have achieved what we as one did on May 9, now it’s time to move forward.
It is devastating that Muhammad Adib had to be at the receiving end of such thuggish behaviour. But if we Malaysians do not learn anything from this, it is going to be a larger void than the one that is already left by him.