KUALA LUMPUR: The MIC says that it has been wooing the Hindu Rights Action Force (Hindraf) in secret discussions, but the group has rejected this claim outright.
MIC president Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu said the party had been holding discussions with Hindraf youth leaders in Kedah, Perak and Selangor, which he said went well. He said the meetings went well as the Hindraf leaders realised that the MIC was also fighting to upgrade the living standards of the Indian community.
"Whatever happened in the past, especially in the March polls, is history. We must work together for the betterment of the community," he said, claiming that some of the Hindraf leaders also regretted their decision to support the opposition.
Hindraf national event co-ordinator Kannan Ramasamy, when contacted, said he was baffled by Samy Velu’s claims as none of the movement’s 10 coordinators had met any MIC leaders.
“Hindraf does not have a membership roll. It is led by P. Waythamoorthy who is assisted by 10 coordinators and as far as I know, none of us had met anyone from the MIC,” added Kannan.
He said Hindraf has never regretted convincing the Indians to vote for the opposition in the 12th general election as the move had brought much improvement for the community in some parts of the country.
“We have noted that a lot of improvement has taken place for Indians in the five states led by the Pakatan Rakyat coalition since the election,” he said.
Hindraf national coordinator R.S Thanenthiran concurred and added the best thing that happened from supporting the opposition was the awareness created that Indians mattered in the country.
“For the first time ever, it has been made known to the minority Indians that they had the power to bring changes through the ballot box,” he added.
Both Thanenthiran and Kannan advised Samy Vellu to back off and concentrate on rebuilding the MIC.