Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Romba Thanks Boss? - Not Quite!

Human Resources Minister Dr S Subramaniam thanked the government and Deputy Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak for approving the MIC's request for a RM50 million allocation for Tamil schools under the stimulus package.’ Apparently Subramaniam went on to claim that this allocation of funds for Tamil schools is proof that the Barisan Nasional regime is ‘very fair.’ 

Oh, Subramaniam, ne ye na sul engay?

I don’t mean to rain on your parade, Subramaniam, but let me put this into a little perspective for you. First, this is somewhat akin to a maid thanking her boss for giving her a $25 raise and being so grateful and gushing with joy for the raise after having worked for slave wages for her boss for most of her life. Yes, Subramaniam, that’s about how this gesture from your political master fits into the larger scheme of things.  

Second, while you may understandably be tickled to bits and are obviously wanting to brag about this news, let me reassure you that more than anything, this episode simply affirms what most of us – and especially the disenchanted Malaysian Indians – have known for much too long: your party is merely the ‘lap dog’ of the Umnoputeras. You see, Subramaniam, we Malaysians do not need to ‘say thanks’ to Umnoputeras for having our rights as Malaysians respected. In case it still has not sunk in on you and your ilk in the MIC, the Barisan Nasional regime that you pledge allegiance to is precisely the culprit for the systematic decades’ long marginalisation of Malaysian Indians.

Tamil schools have been allowed to deteriorate because your Barisan regime has been neglectful of the rights of a large cross-section of its citizens.

Malaysian Indians have been discriminated against in government educational policies by your Barisan regime.

Malaysian Indians have been discriminated against in housing policies by your Barisan regime.

Malaysian Indians have been discriminated against in government immigration policies by your Barisan regime.

Malaysian Indians have been discriminated against in government employment programs by your Barisan regime.

And the list goes on and on….

So, Subramaniam, give us a break. This utter drivel about your Umnoputera masters being ‘very fair’ just will not fool anybody. On the contrary, it simply affirms what I said above about the nature of your subservient relationship to the Umnoputeras where you have to be grateful to them for actually doing what they are obligated to do in the first place but have not done so. The fact of the matter is, your masters have been guilty of trampling on the rights of Malaysian citizens. Malaysian Indians did not rise up to protest and demand that their rights as citizens be acknowledged and respected because your masters have been ‘fair’; let alone ‘very fair.’ Quite the contrary!    

And the fact that the regime has come around to do something about schools which they have opted to ignore for years and to rectify a problem they have repeatedly ignored (which must really speak to your MIC’s effectiveness, right?), is only, in my book, an acknowledgment on the part of your political masters that they have been negligent, if not outright contemptuous of their obligation to generations of Malaysian children who have been deprived of adequate schools.

You, Subramaniam, and your MIC comrades may bow down and say ‘romba thanks Tuan Dato Seri,’ but most of us say it’s about time this regime started respecting the rights of all Malaysians and lived up to its obligations and commitments.   

G. Krishnan