An open letter to Malaysian Indians
Unlike Malaysia, discrimination against Indian citizens in India have a multitude of factors. One is the religion and the other is caste factor. After the British left in August 1947, the higher caste Hindu elite, effectively ruling the nation for the past sixty years. According to the Indian census of 2001, the total population was 1.028 billion. Hindus numbered 827 million or 80.5 %. About 25 per cent (24 million) of those Hindus are belong to Scheduled Castes and Tribes. About 40 per cent (400 million) are “Other Backward Castes”. 15 per cent belonging to the three upper castes. Dominant group of Hindu nationalists come from the three upper castes who constitute about 10 per cent of the total Indian population but controle the civil service and economy of India. And thus the caste system virtually leaves lower caste Hindus in India to an oppressed minority.
Considering the media manipulation techniques, time line and nature of the hindu outrage in Malaysia, there are many reasons to believe that HINDRAF and Uthay Kumar is closely associated with RSS, a Hindu Taliban who already spoiled India’s social fabric with fascist propaganda and communal riots.
RSS is the Hindu-supremacist organization that has fueled a rise in anti-Dalit, anti-Muslim, anti-Christian and anti-Sikh violence. The former ruling party, the BJP is the political arm of the RSS and helped fascism to spread across civil, defence and educational steams of the society. The caste system and the fact that the government machinery is basically controlled by this Hindu-centric group means that violence against victims largely goes unpunished.
The man who killed Mahatma Gandhi in January 1948 for seeking conciliation with Minorities Nathuram Vinayak Godse, at one time belonged to the RSS. That’s part of the Sangh’s legacy. And it has not only spawned the VHP, but numerous other radical organizations backing the RSS, notably the Shiv Sena (Shiva’s Army) party of Bal Thackeray, a self-declared Hitler fan.”
In the year 2005 alone, according to National Crime Records Bureau, 1822602 riots were reported in India. Since Indian community issues in Malaysia is considered as a ‘Minority vs majority’ issue, let us compare the statistics of Indian Muslims in India it self. Unlike Malaysian Hindus, Indian Muslims have not arrived from outside.
Recently, Justice Rajinder Sachar Committee report admitted that 138 Million Muslims across India are severely under-represented in government employment, including PSUs. Ironically, West Bengal, a communist ruled state reported 0 (zero) percent of Muslims in higher positions in its PSUs. A Muslim child attends school for three years and four months, compared to the national average of four years. Less than two percent of the students at the elite Indian Institutes of Technology comprise of the Muslim community. Malaysian Indians are not the original inhabitants of the country, Indian Muslims are from the same racial and ethnic groups as their compatriots. And still they face discrimination in the world’s largest democracy called India. (Ref. Indian Express, The Missing Muslims)
Let us not forget the fact that, Malaysia’s ethnic Indians are mostly from the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu, an impoverished land lagging with illiteracy and feudalism followed by Delhi’s north favored rule. The traditional Hindu caste system compelled caste minorities to move even to Sri Lanka, where Tamils are now in war with their own hosts, Sinhalese. Do Tamil community in Malaysia want to do the same rebellion to their own host in Malaysia, the Malays? In 1971, Malaysia sent a team to enquire about the welfare of its pensioners residing in Punjab. Further, pensions paid in that country are free of income tax, says The Tribune, February 20, 2003, Chandigarh, India. Do HINDRAF want to trouble the interests of Malaysian Indians by misleading Tamil Hindu community against such a kind people like Malays?
Indians form about half of the 2.6 million expatriate workers in the United Arab Emirates’ private sector. Migrated Hindus from India constitutes 1 million or 0.4 per cent of US population now. With the approval of U.S authorities, they built around 1,000 Hindu temples throughout the US . In Tamil Nadu, last year, 250 temples were brought down to earth following High Court orders in Madurai. The reason was those temples were built on public property. There were no protests. Hindus there thought such a drive was carried out in the interest of people at large. Like India, thousands of smaller Hindu temples, often originating in the placement of a deity under a tree, should have mushroomed across Malaysian rubber plantations and the rural countryside. As the Hindu community grew, some were converted to larger structures. But why so much agitation in Malaysia alone?
Indian workers form the third largest foreign work force in Malaysia, with 140,000 of them seeking out a living there. Most of this migrant workers are the relatives of ethnic Indians who comprise 7% of Malaysia’s population of around 24 million. By falsely claiming of “Ethnic cleansing against Hindus in Malaysia” , HINDRAF officials are working against the interests of India’s peaceful migrant community around the world. Every year, more than 1 million Indian citizens are forced to leave their country in search of build better life.
Now let us look at what make people move to out of India? Here are some Indian facts:
India accounts for 40 per cent of the world’s poor and its fiscal deficit is one of the highest in the world. Almost half of Indian women are still illiterate; about 40 million primary school-age children are not in school. India ranks way down at 96 among 119 developing countries included in the Global Hunger Index (GHI). Ref: IFPRI Country Report on India
In India, 16 percent of the population still remains and live with out having sustainable access to improved water resources and there is a probability at birth for 15.3 percent of the population of not surviving to the age of forty. 34.7 percent of the Indian population live with an income below $ 1 a day and 79.9 percent below $ 2 a day. According to the India’s planning commission report 26.1 percent of the populations live below the poverty line.
About 20 per cent, or 200 million, are religious minorities. Muslims constitutes 138 million or 13.4 per cent, Christians 24 million or 2.3 per cent, Sikhs 19 million or 2 per cent, Buddhists 8 million or 0.8 per cent and Jains 4 million or 0.4 per cent. “Others” numbered 6.6 million or 0.6 per cent. Christians provided education at all levels to other religious groups without prosyletisation. According to Tahir Mahmoud, an Indian Muslim journalist, “The 2.3 per cent Christians in the Indian population cater to 20 per cent of all primary education in India, 10 per cent of all the literacy and community health care, 25 per cent of all existing care of destitute and orphans, 30 per cent of all the handicapped, lepers and AIDS patients etc”.
According to the National Human Rights Commission, as on 30th June 2004, there were 3,32,112 prisoners in Indian jails out of which 2,39,146 were under trial prisoners. That’s more than 70 per cent. India’s jails hold a disproportionate number of the country’s minority Muslims, a sign of discrimination and alienation from the Hindu majority. Prison statistics of Indian Jail can be seen from National Crime Record Bureau, here
Hindu upper caste men, who constitute just eight per cent of the total population of India, hold over 70 per cent of the key posts across newsrooms in the country. The so-called twice-born Hindu castes dominate 85 per cent key posts despite constituting just 16 per cent of the total population, while the intermediary castes a represent meager three per cent.
The Hindu Other Backward Class groups, who are 34 per cent of the total population, have a share of just four per cent in the Indian newsrooms. Muslims, who constitute about 13 per cent of the population, control just 4 per cent top posts while Christians and Sikhs have a slightly better representation. But the worst scenario emerges in the case of Scheduled Castes (SCs) and Scheduled Tribes (STs) : Based on CSDS study, 2006. Ref : The Hindu, June 05, 2006
India’s subordinate courts have a backlog of over 22 million cases while the 21 high courts and the Supreme Court have 3.5 million and 32,000 pending cases (2006) There were 13 judges for every million people. Merely 7.8% Muslim employees working in Judicial sector of 12 high-Muslim population states surveyed by Sachar Panel. Recently a parliamentary committee blamed the judiciary for keeping out competent persons of downtrodden communities from “through a shrewd process of manipulation”. Dalits and Indian aborigines are lesser than 2o out of 610 judges working in Supreme Court and state high Courts. “This nexus and manipulative judicial appointments have to be broken, it urged”. [ Parliamentary standing committee report on Constitutional Review, Sudarshan Nachiappan]
According to the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, India has the highest number of street children in the world. There are no exact numbers, but conservative estimates suggest that about 18 million children live and labor in the streets of India’s urban centers. Mumbai, Delhi and Calcutta each have an estimated street-children population of over 100,000.
Australia earned about 500 million Australian dollars from the export of educational services to India, when 93% of Indians never progress beyond secondary school! India also dominated with one in seven (14.4 percent) of the total of 582,984 international students who together contributed about $14.5 billion to the US economy through their expenditure on tuition and living expenses. [The Open Doors 2007, US Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs Report]
The level of child malnutrition in India is among the highest in the world, higher even than some countries in sub-Saharan Africa, says the report ‘Extent of Chronic Hunger and Malnutrition in India’ by the UN’s special rapporteur on the right to food (2006).
Nearly nine out of 10 pregnant women aged between 15 and 49 years suffer from malnutrition and about half of all children (47%) under-five suffer from underweight and 21 percent of the populations are undernourished. India alone has more undernourished people (204 million) than all of sub-Saharan Africa combined. Nearly 20 percent of women dying in childbirth around the globe are Indians. Six out of every 10 births take place at home and untrained people attend more than half of them. 44 per cent of the Indian girls were married before they reached the age of 18. It added, 16 per cent of girls in the age group 15-19 years were already mothers or expecting their first child and that pregnancy is the leading cause of mortality in this age group.
According to the 2001 census, female literacy in India is 54.16 per cent against male literacy of 75.85 per cent. Most of the working women remain outside the organised sector: A mere 2.3 per cent women are administrators and managers, and 20.5 per cent professional and technical workers. Women to men ratio was feared to reach 20:80 by the year 2020 as female feutus killing is rampant. Ten million girls have been killed by their parents in India in the past 20 years, either before they were born or immediately after, told Indian Minister for Women and Child Development Renuka Chowdhury to Reuters. According to the 2001 census, the national sex ratio was 933 girls to 1,000 boys, while in the worst-affected northern state of Punjab, it was 798 girls to 1,000 boys. The availability of ultrasound sex-determination tests leads to such mass killings in India.
Out of the 593 districts in India, 378 or 62.5 % are affected by human trafficking. In 2006, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) sponsored study by Shakti Vahini, found that domestic violence, illiteracy, unemployment, poverty, unsafe migration and child marriage are the major reasons for the increasing rate of illegal human trafficking. 95 % of the women in Madhya Pradesh in commercial sex are due to family traditions. So are 51.79 percent in Bihar,’ said the study.While 43 percent of the total women trafficked are minors, 44 percent of the women are into flesh trade due to poverty. Of the total women who are into sex work in the country, 60 % are from the lower and backward class, which indicates the pathetic living condition of the communities. In Madhya Pradesh, a political bastion of Hindu right wing party, 96.7 % of the women sex workers are from the scheduled castes and scheduled tribes.
There are an estimated 40 million Hindu widows in India, the least fortunate of them shunned and stripped of the life they lived when they were married. It’s believed that 15,000 widows live on the streets of Vrindavan, a city of about 55,000 in northern India.
India has 4 million prostitutes nationwide and 60% of the prostitutes are from the Scheduled Castes and Tribes or other backward caste. UNAIDS says over 38% of those living with HIV in India are women.
Crime-politics nexus also influences the democracy in India. Most of the ministers in elected democratic governments are from criminal background. They are entering into the political arena, influencing the decision-making at the highest level in their own favor and thereby increasing corruption through patron-client relationship. The reason for this pervasive political corruption, in spite of five decades of democracy, is because we, in India, do not elect representatives but patrons. The rich and the avaricious as well as the poor and the stricken, vote on this principle. Lack of transparency within the bureaucracy is also another important factor responsible for promoting public corruption.
Upper caste Hindus — that is, Brahmins, Kshatriyas, and Vaishyas — constitute less than 20 per cent of the Indian population but controls the business and civil service sector of the country. They claim perhaps 80 per cent of the jobs in the new economy, in sectors such as software, biotechnology, and hotel management.
According to the National Crime Records Bureau, only 31 per cent criminal trials are completed in less than a year. Some take even more than 10 years. According to its study, Crime in India 2002, nearly 220,000 cases took more than 3 years to reach court, and about 25,600 exhausted 10 years before they were completed. The term of the Liberhan Commission, formed 14 years ago to probe the demolition of the Babri mosque in Ayodhya and originally given a mandate of three months, has been extended again!
We are alarmed by the fact that even after 50 plus years of survival after independence from Britain, every hour 2 Dalits are assaulted, every day 3 Dalit women are raped, everyday 2 Dalits are murdered, everyday 2 Dalit houses are burnt down.
When it comes to Human Rights issues in India, it is not ratified the Convention against Torture, its citizens do not have the opportunity to find recourse in remedies that are available under international law. The victims are trapped with the local Hindu caste system, which in every aspect militates against their rights. Many victims conclude that a justice system accessible to the poor of the land does not exist at all.
The Human Development Report for 2007-08 released by the UNDP ranked India 128 out of 177 countries, working it out through measures of life expectancy, education and income. Malaysia ranked 63 and listed at under High Human Development category. The report found that India’s GDP per capita (purchasing power parity) is $3,452, far below Malaysia’s $10,882. Read the statistics from UNDP website
Since 1998 about 25 000 Indian farmers have committed suicide because they could not repay their debts. These debts, however, have largely accumulated because these farmers were severely overcharged by their money-lenders asking for up to 32% of interest.
Do the ethnic Indians in Malaysia want to come back to India? I bet none of them will come back to this sinking ship called, India. Instead of asking for more rights they should come out of their caste system and narrowness. Let them learn to respect their hosts, the Malaysian people who provided better opportunities than their “Shining India”. Only such an attitude and kindness will bring them prosperity. Let them not forget the millions of impoverished Indian citizens living in their own country. Read more about Our Shining India at here
Remember that India, as a country cannot offer you food or job. Tamil politicians are people with Dravidian origin and they have limited say in the controle of India’s central government which is ruled by majority Aryans. TamilNadu is the bastion of opposing imposition of north Indian rule and its Hindi language in its territories. South Indians mostly consider English as their national language than Hindi. This north and south division has a long history in India and will continue to go on for ages, as long as people in India continue to remain emotionally myopic, narrow minded and accepting of propaganda and social myths.
In 1965, after a 15 year gap, Hindi was declared as the solitary national language of India. This led to violent protests in Tamil Nadu and so many deaths of tamilians.
The Hindu nationalist movement grew up in the 1920s with the establishment of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS ) The RSS gradually established a network of local branches that met daily for training sessions on martial arts, with ideological sermons making Indian identity synonymous with Hindu culture helped along by the motto “Hindu, Hindi, Hindustan” (one people, one language, one country).
In 1996, Inspired by Hindu myths, a Marathi Hindu mafia leader called Bal Thackeray floated ‘Shiv Sena’ a political party to drive out south Indians from the industrial city of Bombay. Shiv Sena means Army of Shiva, ( referring to Hindu King, Shivaji) succeeded in its aim with the help of Hindu militants who unleashed several communal riots in the city.
In 1991, a Tamil Tiger suicide bomber killed India’s Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi ( A north Indian brahmin with aryan heritage) at an election rally outside Chennai. Those scars against Tamils are still run deep in north India, especially in a government dominated by Gandhi’s Italian-born widow Sonia.
When it comes to recording Indian history, the north of the country often ignores or overlooks events in the south. Tamils consider Vellore revolt is the first organized revolt against British in India, while Delhi officially consider it started with Sepoy Mutiny of 1857. Unlike north Indian Hindus, Tamils consider Lord Rama as the villain and Ravana as the hero. In such many ways, Tamil history and politics are in contradiction with India’s official version, which is in fact authored and promoted by Aryan north. The division within India’s caste maniacs are so deep and it cannot overcome to help anyone outside their circle.
Udit Raj, the prominent Dalit intellectual recalls caste issues in Malaysia in his book,” Dalit & Religious Freedom, 2005“, chapter 38.
“Caste Hindus can give up anything, including their life, but caste attitude. In 1998, when I was invited to attend the first Dalit International Convention at Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, it was unbelievable at first sight, but became a reality, when I attended. About 150 years back, British took Indians to Malaysia as labourers and assistants and eventually Indians made their homes there. More than one million Hindus are living there, but are still maintaining their caste identity. Dalits living in Malaysia have lots of grievances, which is not a contribution of the concerned soil, but virus went with them. So far, no medicine has been manufactured that can kill the caste virus“
Mr. P. Waytha Moorthy, the Chairman of Hindu Right Action Force in fact is the Malaysian representative of global ‘Hindutva’ alliance called Vishva Hindu Parishat. He also work with RSS controlled Hindu charity institutions like Hindu America Foundation and UK based SEWA International. Both of these organizations were involved in funding anti minority riots in India. Hiring such a hate monger and ardent admirer of Aryan Hindu supremacy to solve issues of Malaysian Indians who are basically of dravidian origin will back fire soon. Instead, Tamil Hindus should make way for peaceful dialogue with Malay organizations and concentrate more of their efforts for caste and poverty eradication. The thoughts of Thanthai Periyar E.V. Ramaswamy should be their guide light, than the false propaganda war initiated by Hindutva and its militant mafia gang, RSS.