MIC panel wants Interlok removed

G Palanivel warns against planting seeds of prejudice in the minds of children, and remains adamant that the book be removed.

PETALING JAYA: The seven panelist appointed by MIC had agreed that the Interlok book should be withdrawn from being used in schools, said MIC president G Palanivel today.

“There was no consensus to say the book was in line with the 1Malaysia spirit. People should not be made to believe this. If so, we are in for a big setback,” he added.

Palanivel said even the introduction of sex education in schools is being discussed and debated seriously prior to implementaion.

The MIC president also requested the Education Ministry not to take the views of the panelists for granted.

“The panelist have expressed their view that they will not meet the ministry officials again if what they have expressed is being belittled. This is not a matter of ego or loss of face.

“There is far more at stake and we do want to politise this issue. Writings which affect feelings of any group in Malaysia should not be introduced as part of the school syllabus,” he said.

“Let’s not plant any seed of prejudice in our young ones. It is too sensitive and risky to expose such writings to our school going children,” he added.

In view of this, Palanivel said MIC stands by the decision of its experienced team of panelists.

“We hope the ministry undertsands and appreciates the wishes and feelings of our community and comes up with a quick and firm decision on this matter.

“Putting additional footnotes, glossaries and guidlines is not going to help resolve the matter,” he added.

The novel, penned by a national laureate, has been introduced as a component for the Malay literature subject for Form Five students,

However, MIC and other Indian groups had objected, saying the book contained inaccurate and disparaging information about the Indian community.

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