Malaysiakini Letter

Harapan need not look far for 'amicable solution' to Seafield temple issue

A Chandrakumanan  |  Published:  |  Modified:

LETTER | A statement by Subang MP R Sivarasa urged all relevant parties to find an amicable solution to the issue of the century-old Seafield Sri Maha Mariamman Temple in USJ 25, and not politicise the issue by giving attacking Selangor Menteri Besar Mohamed Azmin Ali as well as other state leaders.

I am astonished as well as bewildered by Sivarasa’s statement, as it was a temple demolition by the previous BN-led Selangor government that turned Indians against BN and cast their votes for the opposition in 2008.

According to many political analysts, the swing in Indian votes from BN to the opposition is one of the major factors behind the political tsunami that happened during the 12th general election.  

Above all, a man who built his political career on demonstrating since the Reformasi days has no right to advice Indians to not demonstrate.

Clearly, Sivarasa is more concerned about the image of the Pakatan Harapan state government rather than the fate of a 145-year old temple in this issue.

It is interesting to take note that in the same article, Sivarasa had advised the developers and the temple committee to sit down and come to some agreement on the matter.

This demolition was planned by the developers of the area called One City Development Sdn Bhd and crucially, they have obtained a court order giving them possession of the temple land.

However, there is a dispute over this court order, and this means that if we were to follow the advice of Sivarasa, it is highly probable that we will be charged for contempt of court. Isn’t it strange for a lawyer like Sivarasa to not know such a basic matter?

Instead of offering half-baked suggestions, Sivarasa should learn from BN, and he has to look no further than the temple in front of MidValley Megamall to find the “amicable solution” he seeks.

Last time, the same issue regarding Indian temples last that is raised today in Selangor when building the MidValley shopping mall temple, and also, the one on Jalan P Ramlee behind Menara Weld.

In that case, both temples were under DBKL and the BN government could negotiate till all terms demanded from both sides were fulfilled.

Under BN, in 199,  the temple was asked to make way for the MidValley Project and today, we have one of the most beautiful temples in Malaysia situated at the hub of a popular shopping mall and tourist destination.

Can the Harapan government do the same for Indians?


The views expressed here are those of the author/contributor and do not necessarily represent the views of Malaysiakini.

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