LETTER

What's the real population of Indians in M'sia?

Indian Citizen

Published
Modified 28 Aug 2012, 3:34 am

What is the actual population of Indians in Malaysia?

Is it only about 7 percent as per statistics from the BN government or is it very much more? Has the MIC made any effort to refute this statistics for the last 30 years?

It's a very simple analysis of our population - this is not rocket science which the BN government is good at.

Check out the statistics at this website and you will find that the percentage distribution of population by ethnics groups Malaysia 2010, where the Hindus account for only 7.3 percent.

Let's take into consideration the one day statistics for the yearly Religious Hindu festival of Thaipusam in Malaysia, where hundreds and thousands of Malaysian Hindus attend at various locations in Malaysia.

(Please note to analyse the population, I am only considering a major part of the Indian population the Hindus, there are still Indian Christians, Muslims and Buddhists).

The numbers of visitors to these various temples around the country on the day of the Thaipusam have been reported by the mainstream BN-controlled news media.

These figures have been reported over the last few years and year by year there are more and more people attending the festival.

It was reported that in Kuala Lumpur Batu Caves that there were about 1.2 million to 1.5 million people who visited the temple.

Let's take into consideration only 80 percent to be Hindus since there are also foreigners and others non-Hindus at the festival. So there would be about 960,000 Hindus at Batu Caves for Thaipusam.

In Penang there are more than 800,000 people who attend the festival. We consider only about 70 percent are Hindus since a large number of Chinese in Penang do attend this festival. That works to about 560,000 Hindus in Penang for Thaipusam.

In Ipoh there are about more than 500,000 people who attend the festival. Here again we consider about 80 percent to be Hindus, that's 400,000 Hindus in Ipoh for Thaipusam.

In Sungei Petani there are about well over 350,000 people attending the festival. We consider about 90 percent are Hindus, that's about 315,000 Hindus in Sungei Petani for Thaipusam.

In Johor Baru there are well over 400,000 people who attend the festival. We consider about 90 percent are Hindus, that's about 360,000 Hindus in Johore Bharu for Thaipusam.

In Kuantan there are about well over 150,000 people attending the festival. We consider about 90 percent are Hindus, that's about 135,000 Hindus in Kuantan for Thaipusam.

The festival attracts an average of about 20,000 to 30,000 people in smaller towns such as Port Klang , Teluk Intan, Malacca, Alor Setar and many other temples in various towns.

Although it is a small temple there will be over 5,000 people attending Thaipusam prayers, so, we can safely consider there are well over 100,000 Hindus in all these places throughout the country.

A simple addition of all the above shows up to 2,830,000 Hindus attending Thaipusam festival, of which we minus the Indian nationals who are here on work visas - about 100,000 both legal and illegal. The Malaysian Hindus attending Thaipusam is at an average of 2,730,000 people.

But, a very important fact, only an average of 50 percent of the Hindu population attend the Thaipusam festival. I personally did a check, called about 10 close Hindu friends on Thaipusam day, only three of them went to Batu Caves. This is common among in middle and upper class families.

Most of them stay away due to the crowd. So, to consider 50 percent of the Hindu population attends Thaipusam festival is fair.

My view is there are about 5.5 million Hindus plus about 1 million other Indians (Indian Christians, Muslims and Buddhists) in Malaysia, which results to a population of more than 22 -23 percent Indians, even with an error in this analysis, is not less than 20 percent.

The Non-Malays in this country are between 55 percent to 58 percent, including Sabahans, Sarawakians and others.

From this analysis we can conclude the population distribution to be:

Malays - 45 percent

Chinese - 28 percent (A large number of Chinese have migrated lately)

Indians - 20 percent

Bumiputra Natives - 7 percent (Aborigines, Sabahans & Sarawakians)

The late Dr V David in his book ' Freedom that never came ' had on page 330 referred to a paper presented at the Wollongong University, Australia on July 21, 1985, which stated that Indian population in Malaysia was 16 percent of the total population.

This statistic was then 27 years ago. So one can do their math to know what is the Indian population as of now 2012. Also you can check this website .

The Indian community in Malaysia is the smallest of the three main ethnic groups, accounting for about 10 percent of the country's population.

The Punjabis (mostly Sikhs) are also substantial in number and the people of Pakistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lankan origin are included in the "Indian" category for statistical purposes.

It's questionable why Sri Lankans, Pakistanis and Bangladeshis are included in the Indian Category.

Let's go back to the GE12 elections where the Opposition won five states (minus Perak State now).

This was possible because the GE12 was held just after the Hindraf Rally in 2007 and it's the Hindus population of 20 percent which was the deciding factor for the Opposition's win in these states.

This would not have been possible if the Indian population was only 7 percent as per then statistics from the Department of Statistics, Malaysia.

From 1960 until 2011, the Malaysia population grew from 17 million to almost 29 million in December 2011.