|Rediff India Abroad Home | All the sections|
Malaysia party to meet ethnic Indians' demands
Jaishree Balasubramanian in Kuala Lumpur | January 02, 2008 20:30 IST
As ethnic Indians continue to protest against their alleged marginalisation, the Malaysian Indian Congress, a key constituent of the ruling coalition, is to be revamped to make the party more proactive in meeting the expectations of the community.
The 62-year-old MIC will change suitably to make it more relevant to the Indians, party president Samy Vellu said on Wednesday.
He noted that the party, which is a component of the ruling Barisan National Party of Premier Abdullah Badawi, will change its course to move more effectively to resolve the problems facing the community.
While the past methods adopted by the MIC have been successful in resolving the community's woes, a more concerted effort is needed to resolve some of the more difficult and sensitive problems, Samy Vellu said without elaborating.
"We will manage the party in a different style with a higher efficiency towards serving the ordinary people," he said in a statement.
His comments follow mass protests by ethnic Indians, led by the non-governmental Hindu Rights Action Forum (Hindraf), against the alleged marginalisation of the commuity.
Samy Vellu, who is also the works minister, had recently indicated that he would introduce new faces to contest the upcoming general election.
"The people's expectations have changed and we also need to make changes to remain relevant," he said, adding that the MIC had always been reorganising itself to meet the expectations of the Indian community.
"We will work in a manner that will benefit the community," Samy Vellu was quoted by Bernama news agency as saying.
The minister said that MIC understood the mode of being efficient by doing the right things, and at the same time striving to do things right.
"We will continue to safeguard the interests and rights of the Indian community in the right manner and right way," he said, stressing that education would continue to be the main thrust of the party this year with the official opening of the Asian Institute of Medicine, Science and Technology, a university owned by the MIC.
"The creation of more Indian graduates will be our main objective in 2008," he said, adding the party's educational arm, the Maju Institute of Educational Development, supports 1,200 medical students overseas annually.