London trip: Malaysian Cops give Hindraf leader last-minute jitters


The large presence of police personnel outside his apartment in Kuala Lumpur had set off alarm bells just hours before Hindu Rights Action Force (Hindraf) leader P Uthayakumar was scheduled to leave for London.

When met by Malaysiakini, the activist was even talking about the possibility of being detained again under the Internal Security Act (ISA).

In lieu of this, Uthayakumar, who had launched a new political party over the weekend, even gave a farewell message to his legion of supporters, calling on them to remain calm and pledged to continue the struggle from behind bars.

His wife, Indra Devi, was also anxious about the prospect of having to lose him again, especially after Uthayakumar had just been released from ISA in April after spending 514 days in detention.

However, it turned out to be a false alarm.

The policemen were there to serve him with a notice that the authorities have cancelled the restrictions imposed on him under Section 10 of the ISA.

Uthayakumar received the letter but refused to sign the document.

'This was totally unnecessary'

Speaking to Malaysiakini later, the 48-year-old lawyer questioned the manner in which the police had served him the notice.

"This was totally unnecessary. Why must they come to my house, instead of the office? Their action only caused alarm to my family. My father-in-law is a diabetic patient and I have two teenage daughters.

"They have people watching me. They have been monitoring my phone calls and that of my family," said the vexed activist.

Although expressing concern as to whether he would be allowed to board the flight, Malaysiakini later learnt that he had passed through Immigration and is en route to London.

Uthayakumar would be undergoing treatment for a heart muscle disorder during his week-long trip.

He is also expected to meet his younger brother and Hindraf chairperson Waytha Moorthy, who is in self-exile in London.

The latter had left the country shortly before Uthayakumar and four other Hindraf leaders were arrested under the ISA in December 2007, weeks after they had staged a mammoth street protest in Kuala Lumpur.
25/07/09

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