Open letter to Mr. Y.b Dato’ Seri Najib Tun Razak, Prime Minister of Malaysia


source from FIDH, 30 march 2011,

Re: Judicial harassment of 52 HINDRAF and HRP members and obstacles to freedom of peaceful assembly

Your Excellency,

The Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders, a joint programme of the World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT) and the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH), strongly condemns the judicial harassment of 54 members of Hindu Rights Action Force (HINDRAF) and its sister organisation, the Human Rights Party (HRP), two organisations aiming at defending the rights of Hindu and other marginalised minorities in Malaysia, following their organisation of and participation in a peaceful march against racism on February 27, 2011.

Between March 1 and 3, 2011, the 54 human rights defenders were charged by courts of different cities with “acting as members of an unlawful society” or “participating in assemblies of an unlawful society”, under Section 43 of the Societies Act of 1966 [1], which states that “any person who is or acts as a member of an unlawful society or attends a meeting of an unlawful society (…) shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable, on conviction, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three years or to a fine not exceeding five thousand ringgit or to both”.

On February 13, 2011, HINDRAF and HRP had announced their intention to lead a Solidarity March Against Racism, scheduled for February 27, 2011, but for which Kuala Lumpur police denied a permit. At least 54 HINDRAF and HRP members were arrested in several locations across Malaysia between February 13 and 27 for participating in various promotional activities in the run up to the march. They were subsequently all released on bail but they all continue to face charges. The hearings of their cases will reportedly happen during the first week of April in the different courts.

On March 1, 2011, five members of HINDRAF and HRP, namely Messrs. K. Tamil Selvam, HRP Vice-President and HINDRAF Coordinator in Selangor State, S. Jayathas, Information Chief of HRP, K. Navakrishna, T. Periasamy and S. Loshna Rau, were charged by the Court of Selayang under Section 43 of the Societies Act of 1966 for “acting as members of an unlawful society” on February 13, 2011 at 12.15 p.m., at Km 13 Bukit Kanching, Jalan Ipoh, Rawang, State of Selangor. Mr. Loshna Rau faces an additional charge of “obstructing a civil servant on duty”, under Section 186 of the Criminal Code.

On March 2, 2011, six members of HINDRAF and HRP, namely Messrs. Periasamy Ramesh, National Secretary of HINDRAF, Jagadeesan Vijayalingam, Subramaniam Jayakumar, Rengasamy Mogan, Nagooran Subramanyam and R. Supiah Sivagumar, were also charged under Section 43 by the Court of Ipoh for “participating to the assembly of an unlawful society” on February 13, 2011 between 9.30 a.m. to 11.03 a.m. at the Jelapang Road, State of Perak.

On March 3, 2011, 20 members of HINDRAF and HRP, including five women, namely S. Sivakumar, HINDRAF Coordinator in N. Sembilan State, K. Nadarajah, A. Sarawana Kumar, V. Prabagaran, M. Ramesh, S. Krishnan, K. Murugiah, V. Mathavan, R. Munisuaran. A. William George, A. Radakrishnan, Vatumalai B. Kalithas Karanamurthy, Uthaya Kumar Subramaniam, Ravichdiran Kuppusamy, Tilegavathy B., Maheswary Manoo, Pushpalatha Gunasekaran, P. Waytha Nayagi and Madonna Selvarayar, were charged by the Court of Seremban under Section 43 for “acting as members of an unlawful society” on February 13, 2011 at 2.35 p.m. in Jaland Za’aba, Seremban, State of Negeri Sembilan. Two other human rights defenders from HINDRAF could not attend the hearing of March 3, 2011 as they were ill. However, they were also charged under Section 43.

On March 3, 2011, 21 members of HINDRAF and HRP, including five women, namely Ms. Lourdemary N. Vasu Pillai, Ms. Devika Ravee Chandran, Ms. Gethaa Ravee Chandran, Ms. Saraspaty Subramaniam, Ms. Kokilarani Nallan and Messrs. Lingeswaran Kuppusamy, K. Chandramohan R. Kanesan, Sundaram Periannai, Harikrishnan Arumugam, Maniam A. Palaniyandee, V. Thandavuthabani Keveloo, Kalaichelvan A. Paliappan, Paramasivam N. Muthiah, Mahendran Subramaniam, Sugumaran S. Muniandy, V. Tamil Selvan Veeriah, Thiagarajan Sasayapilai, Balakrishnan Kunjoo Nair, Nathan Alagasundaram, S. Thinagaraja and Manimaran Sinnapan, were charged by the Court of Kuala Lumpur under Section 43 of the Societies Act for “taking part to the assembly of an unlawful society” on February 13, 2011 in Little India, Brickfields, Kuala Lumpur. The Court of Kuala Lumpur also charged Mr. Periasamy Ramesh under Section 47 of the Societies Act [2], as he was in possession of banners and documents that promote HINDRAF activities.

The Observatory recalls that HINDRAF submitted in January 2006 its first application for registration although this reportedly went unacknowledged by the Registrar of Societies. They submitted a second application in October 2007, which also went unacknowledged until October 2008, when the Home Minister announced that HINDRAF was banned. However, no court order followed or accompanied this announcement and, thus, HINDRAF continued its activities. In order to protect its volunteers, HINDRAF renamed itself “Hindraf Makkal Sakthi” in 2008. On October 2, 2009, its legal representatives sent a letter of intent to register the organisation under this name, however, the Registrar of Societies has reportedly not responded to this request.

On November 25, 2010, Mr. P. Uthayakumar, HINDRAF Legal Adviser, founded the Human Rights Party, and submitted the formal application for registration, which remains pending.

Your Excellency,

The Observatory expresses its deepest concern about the judicial harassment against HINDRAF and HRP members on the ground that they belong or participate to assemblies of unlawful societies, and further denounce the continuous refusal of the Malaysian authorities to register these two organisations.

The Observatory therefore calls on the Malaysian authorities to put an end to any act of judicial harassment against HINDRAF and HRP members as well as against all human rights defenders in Malaysia, and to comply in all circumstances with the provisions of the Declaration on Human Rights Defenders, adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on December 9, 1998, especially its Article 5 which states that “for the purpose of promoting and protecting human rights and fundamental freedoms, everyone has the right, individually and in association with others, at the national and international levels: (a) To meet or assemble peacefully; (b) To form, join and participate in non-governmental organizations, associations or groups”.

We express our sincere hope that you will take these considerations and requests into account.

Yours sincerely,

Souhayr Belhassen, FIDH President

Eric Sottas, OMCT Secretary General

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Comments

  • MESKAM HJ SALIMI  On April 2, 2011 at 11:15 am

    YB DATO’ SRI NAJIB, asalamualaikum, saya tak puas hati diatas pemberian terus projek PPRT kepada ATM, Saya kontrektor kelas F SUSAH NAK CARI MAKAN, Tolonglah Dato’Sri, dahlah di Selangor kurang PROJEK, Anak saya 10 orang dato’ 4 di IPTA, 2 di Sek. men. 3 Sek, Rendah, dan satu tadika,

  • tejaswini  On April 29, 2011 at 1:05 pm

    Mr.Y.B Dato Seri Najib Tun Razak i will ask for u some help u must do it uncle.My family in a big troble.We ask money from them but we cant pay.My mother born in india but she got finish degree,she marrige at here until 14 years she never get ic but the latter come also we cant go.Plese help me.

  • nurul nadia natasya  On June 14, 2011 at 6:09 am

    assalamualaikum pm 1malaysia, saya seorang bekas tentera nak tanya beberapa soalan?pertama ….apakah pm tidak mengambil berat atau perihatin terhadap golongan bekas tentera yang tamat perkhimatan 10,13,15 dan 18th….apakah mereka ini dianggap tidak berjuang kepada negara,?saya bangga menjadi rakyat melaysia dibawah pemerintahan kerajaan barisan nasional kerana kerajaan berperihatin…lihatlah sedangkan nelayan yang berjuang demi lautan yang luaspun mendapat elaun sara hidup,inikan pula bekas tentera yang berjuang demi negara tiada apa-apa elaunpun…yang ada tu,,,memang ada tapi mati dulu baru anak bini dapat merasa rm3,000 wang kherat kematian yang di naikan dari rm500 kepada rm3,000…tapi kami bekas tentera tak juga merasa?

  • Kayelvilly Param  On November 24, 2011 at 7:52 am

    My name was blacklisted. I have financial problem which i was unable to settle my loan. I wanted to buy house and car in future. Please help me. My suggestion can i have my EPF money to settle the loan that i borrow. Please suggest me and help me to settle my problem. I’m a married women with 4 kids.

  • Hasna bin Din  On December 28, 2011 at 1:32 pm

    Asalamualaikum YAB Dato Seri,saya ambil kesempatan disini mengucap Selamat Tahun Baru.Dato Seri,terima kasih di atas keperihatinan pihak Dato Seri terhadap rakyat jelata selama Dato Seri mengambil alih pimpinan tertinggi negara sebagai Perdana Menteri.Disini ingin saya menarik perhatian YAB terhadap masaalah pihak pekerja swata hadapi walaupun kerajaan membuat banyak penambah baik tahap pendapatan pekerja awam.
    Sebagai salah seorang prkerja swata,saya ingin mengadu pada YAB,bahawa golongan kami bagai pengundi kelas kedua….mana tidak nya pekerja awam mendapat manafaat yang banyak dari pihak kerajaan.Realiti nya bukan semua kakitangan kerajaan merupakan penyokong kerajaan Barisan Nasional.Saya ingin menonjolkan salah satu masaalah yang amat ketara perbezaan kelebihan antara pekerja awam dan pekerja swata.
    Pekerja awam mendapat kelebihan yang amat baik dari pihak bank apabila membuat pinjaman peribadi.Bank hanya mengenakan faedah serendah 2.55%-5.98% dengan jangka pembayaran balik dari 1 tahun sehingga 20 tahun.
    Malang bagi kami pekerja swata yang dikenakan faedah terlalu tinggi.Bermula dari 9.98%-12.55%.YAB,lebih dasyat lagi ada sebuah bank komersial yang pada mula nya mengenakan faedah sebanyak 3.00% sebulan….sebulan YAB…kalau setahun 36.00%Ramai yang terperangkap….pinjaman Rm5000.00 berkesudahan dgn membayar sebanyak Rm14,000.00 setelah di campur faedah untuk 5 tahun.(36%x 5=180%)Pokok nya Rm5000….tapi faedah Rm9000.
    Walau macamana pun bank tersebut telah menurunkan faedah nya kepada 24% setahun.Kesedihan nya disini ADAKAH PEKERJA SWATA.pengundi kelas kedua?KALAU BUKAN…..kenapa kami tidak beri hak yang sama dinikmati olih pekerja sektor AWAM?ADAKAH perkerja awam semua meyokong kerajaan BARISAN NASIONAL!?…….Tidakkkkkkkkkkkk….Bukan kah SATU undi membawa makna KEMENANGAN bagi mana-mana parti pun!!!
    Akhir kata YAB,saya berharap Dato Seri dapat melihat kepayahan yang di hadapi olih golongan pekerja swata yang mungkin selama ini terlepas pandang olih Yang Berhormat-Yang Berhormat yang telah di lantik olih pengundi -pengundi setia pekerja swata yang menjadi penentu parti yang memerintah.
    Semuga dengan kedatangan PRU 13 yang sudah pasti tidak lama lagi akan memberi khabar gumbira kepada PENGUNDI PEKERJA SWATA…..maupun pekrja sektor awam.
    Waalaikumusalam.

  • faridah bt sallan  On May 19, 2012 at 1:30 pm

    Assalamualaikum YAB Dato Seri,pertama sekali saya ingin mengucapkan terima kasih yang tidak terhingga diatas keperihatinan pihak Dato terhadap warga Malaysia selama Dato Seri mengambil alih kepimpinan yang tertinggi Negara sebagai Perdana Menteri.Saya adalah salah seorang jurulatih PLKN ingin bertanya kepada pihak Dato Seri,bilakah kami warga jurulatih PLKN akan diserap ke jawatan tetap?Semoga kami warga jurulatih kem mendapat khabar berita yang gembira dari pihak Dato Seri.Kami semua pengundi Barisan Nasional.Wassalam.

  • Nor shahedi Bin Mahar Afandi  On July 24, 2012 at 4:56 am

    Assalamualaikum YAB Dato Seri, nama saya NOR SHAHEDI bin MAHAR AFANDI menetap di Kajang Selangor. Saya mohon jasa baik dr Dato Seri muga dapat kira nya Dato Seri menolong untuk saya memiliki Teksi ( sewa beli ) kesulitan yang saya alami ialah saya tiada modal untuk membayar wang pendahuluan. Buat masa ini saya hanya memiliki Motor ( MODENAS GT 128) yang telah habis bayaran ansuran.Nak saya cagarkan motor ini utk wang pendahuluan Teksi tidak mencukupi.Saya telah mencuba membuat rayuan di beberapa Agensi seperti Baitulmal / Tekun dan yang lain2 tapi semua nya menghampakan. Muga Dato Seri dapat membantu menyelesaikan masaalah saya. kelapangan masa Dato Seri serta jasa baik dan pertolongan Dato Seri dalam urusan ini amat saya Hargai.Demi menempuh perjalanan kehidupan saya yang berumur 52 tahun serta keluarga yang menjadi tanggung jawab saya. Sekian Terima Kasih.Wassalam

  • Raj  On January 8, 2013 at 11:04 pm

    Salam sejahtera dan salam 1 Malaysia Dato Seri..Kami warga IPG dan wakil bagi pelajar ambil khas GSTT 2012.Untuk makluman Dato Seri, kami sangat berhutang budi atas peluang yang Dato Seri meluahkan atas warga GSTT.Meskipun, Kami tidak gembira atas tempoh pengajian yang ditawarkan bagi program perguruan kami.Untuk makluman Dato Seri, di kumpulan kami terdapat juga ramai pelajar yang berusia lebih daripada 35 tahun dan ada juga kalangan mereka yang berumah tangga dan berkeluarga.Dato Seri,kami pun berhasrat,beringin dam bermimpi untuk berhidup secara gembira bersama keluarga.Kami sangat berharap agar Dato Seri akan menimbangkan masalah kami dan mengambil suatu penyelesaian.Sekian, Terima Kasih.

    Yang Ikhlas,

    Warga GSTT.

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