NGOs call for probe into thugs who disrupted forum on Hindu cemeteries

GEORGE TOWN: A group of Indian NGOs has urged the police to investigate the disruption of a forum on Hindu cemeteries held at the Caring Society Complex last weekend.

The group’s spokesperson, N Ganesan, said that at least four local thugs attended the forum uninvited, caused a ruckus and assaulted one man, forcing the organisers to call off the forum.

Ganesan identified one of the thugs as S Ragendran, commonly known as Weld Quay Tambi and another as Segaran.

Ragendran and his cohorts had disrupted the forum by constantly raising their voices, interrupting speaker Ganesan’s speech and talked on irrelevant matters.

Eye witnesses said Ragendran had at least thrice punched a Hindraf activist, Selvam on his face causing his mouth to bleed.

“The forum was attended by people on invitation. These thugs attended the forum uninvited. They also refused to leave the forum when told to do so.

Stop the bullying 

Ganesan alleged that some powerful people were behind the disruption.

“We learnt that similar disruptions have marred other forums in the past. But we can’t speak on behalf of others,” Ganesan told press conference here today.

He lodged a police report in Jalan Patani police station yesterday on the incident that took place last Saturday Nov 30.

“We want the police to investigate thoroughly and take necessary steps to stop this bullying,” urged Ganesan.

The forum was organised by an ad-hoc coalition of NGOs and Concerned Citizens Penang to deliberate issues of burial grounds and crematoriums for the Indian community in Penang.

The forum was also to focus on current cessation of incinerator crematorium services at the Batu Lanchang Hindu Cemetery.

The meeting was to conclude with preparing a petition to be submitted to the Chief Minister, demanding him to address the pressing issues.

The ad-hoc coalition will re-organise the forum again this Saturday, this time probably with police protection, and finalise the petition to the Chief Minister. The venue has not been decided yet.

Among NGOs were Hindraf, Malaysia Hindu Dharma Mamandram, Malaysia Hindu Sangam, Bayan Lepas Tamil School Old Boys Association, Penang Hindu Association, temple and community leaders.

Source: Free Malaysia Today