Monday, December 8, 2008

Impotence Personified

I suspect you were thinking this column might have to do with erectile dysfunction. Well, it does have to do with dysfunction anyway. Some synonyms of impotence include uselessness, helplessness, inadequacy, incapability, and powerlessness.

For a vast majority of Malaysian Indians, that impotent is exactly what the MIC has become. The latest manifestation of this impotence comes from the MIC’s public response to the latest known demolition of a Hindu shrine by government authorities. This time, the culprits responsible targeted a shrine in Taman Desa, Seputeh.

Deputy Federal Territories Minister M Saravanan, who was supposedly upset about this latest destruction of a Hindu shrine reportedly said, ‘I have an understanding with the Federal Territories Minister that no existing temples would be demolished unless an alternative site has been given. If there was any development on the land, then the temple would be relocated.’

Apparently, as the Taman Desa case illustrates, such destructions are still permissible despite a ban on the destruction of temples by the Federal Territories ministry without allocation of an alternative site. Like me, I’m sure you’ve heard this story many times before. Quite frankly, I’m one to no have expectations – let alone lofty expectations of the BN regime. What is especially disturbing about this latest case is that it speaks volumes of not just the seeming contempt of the regime toward its own commitments on the temple destruction and relocation issue, we see the glaring impotence of those like Saravanan and the MIC on this matter.

This absolute irrelevance of the MIC on the temple destruction and so many other issues has become farcical, and it is literally become comical. The MIC seems to be notorious ignorant about such temple destructions before they happen, even though it is a part of the very regime that undertakes these calculated measures of targeting Hindu shrines. Time and again, Samy Vellu and his motley crew only seem capable of offering hollow and meaningless words – once which seem to have no bearing on what the government sees fit to do. Indeed, if these temple destructions are any indication, the regime, which the MIC seems so eager repeatedly bow to, seems ever as contemptuous of the MIC.

I cannot help but come back to the only plausible explanation: that the MIC is even more impotent than I suspected.

G. Krishnan