Think tank Kajian Politik untuk Perubahan (KPRU) holds the view that the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MOU) between Barisan Nasional (BN) and Hindu Rights Action Force (Hindraf) is a mere ploy to fish for Indian votes, yet it has little impact in GE13. This follows the failure of 55 years under BN for raising the living standards of Indians in Malaysia.

Hindraf under the leadership of P Waythamoorthy and BN under the leadership of Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak have signed a MoU dubbed the ‘Hindraf-BN five-year blueprint for the Indian community’. The MoU focuses on four key areas – the upliftment of displaced estate workers, resolving the issue of statelessness, the  provision of both education and business opportunities.

It is an act too little too late in a desperate attempt to sweep up the Indian votes. Through this MoU, BN has forgotten its roots by indirectly dropping Malaysian Indian Congress (MIC) from the BN’s party component lineup by recognizing the existence of Hindraf. It also signals an indirect confession by BN and MIC by their own failure championing the rights of Indians in this country.

Meanwhile, it directly signals the pure desperation of BN and Najib to fish the Indian votes no matter the method or situation as MIC has ultimately failed to gain any support or votes from the Indians. Hence the realization of the part of Najib that he has lost the Indian votes whom no longer hold any faith on the ability or the empty promises by Najib and BN.

In other words, as usual, the Indians will not benefit from this signing as it was not made in good faith or transparency to raise the living standards or bring forward any interests of the Indians in this country. It was done purely to fish the Indian votes for BN.

The reason why BN has gone fishing for votes is because BN has never regarded any of the BN party components as equals with the United Malays National Organisation (UMNO). One of the glaring examples of this is the nomination of Zulkifli Nordin for the Shah Alam Parliamentary seat even though that nomination raises eyebrows from the Malaysian Chinese Assocation (MCA) as Zulkifli Nordin is usually known for his racist tendencies.

The Indians should realize that the support for this MoU will not bring any benefit to the Indians in this country. Just as MIC before Hindraf, this MoU smells of political interests and not the public interest of the Indians. In other words, this MoU is just another empty promises on a string of empty promises by BN to lure votes for this coming GE13.

KPRU also opines that by the signing of this MoU, Hindraf is recognizing the continuance of racial politics in which Malaysia is at a transitional crossroad, leaving behind racial politics into an era of mature politics where the interest of the public is upheld inclusive of all races in this country. The interests of all races will be faced and dealt with together and not just the interest of a single race as been carried out by BN from the past 55 years.

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