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Ramasamy: Anwar’s “stab me” metaphor if he fails to care for Indians insinuates Indians are a violent lot

Publish date: Wed, 17 Apr 2024, 01:43 PM

AT THE recent Dr Ambedkar Jayanthi birthday anniversary in Shah Alam, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim said among other things that he should be “stabbed” if he neglects the Indian community in Malaysia.

Why Anwar used such word is puzzling. He could have uttered the word on the spur of the moment to show that failing to assist the Indian community is a serious matter.

Anwar is not asking Indians to stab him but a metaphor or symbolism to illustrate that he is serious about addressing the woes of the community.

Metaphors are often used in speeches and writings to convey the significance of the particular subject matters.

They are not literal expressions but expressions intended to enhance the meaning of the subject matters.

The question is whether the use of the phrase “stab me” was an appropriate or relevant phrase to convey the message that if Anwar fails the Indian community he should be taken to task. Taken to task maybe in the mind of Anwar is equivalent to “stabbing him”.

Moreover, the “stab me” metaphor does conjure an image that Indians have the proclivity towards violence. Much has been written and spoken about the Indian working-class’ affinity to violence in the past.

Police shootings of Indians allegedly involved in gangsterism or high presence of Indians on remand in prisons have led to the belief that Indians especially those in the B40 group are prone to violence.

Although there is no scientific link between violence and race, it is popularly believed that Indians might have the propensity to engage in violence.  I am not sure whether Anwar sees the links between race and violence but the use of the metaphor is not helpful.

Or if the “stab me” phrase just a ploy

However, if Anwar had taken the pains to respect and do something for the Indians the phrase might be appropriate.

But unfortunately, here is a PM of the country who is more interested in political drama rather than doing something meaningful for the society. More than a year has gone by yet he has not brought about the much-needed reforms.

Anwar takes on the role of the champion of Palestinians without proposing a political solution. Talks of billions coming into the country as foreign direct investments (FDIs) without providing the actual facts and figures.

If he is such a great leader for all, why have the Malays deserted him? The Chinese are holding on the delusion fed by the fake multi-racial DAP and PKR of the cultural threat posed by PAS.

In the last state elections, there are clear signs that Indians were slowly deserting the hypocritical Pakatan Harapan (PH)-led government.

Anwar might have intended to use the phrase “stab me” to win over Indian support especially in the coming Kuala Kubu Bharu (KKB) by-elections.

He knows very well that where the Indian votes swing will eventually determine the outcome of the polls whether in favour of the opposition or the unholy PH-BN alliance.

There are some segments in the Indian community who are upset with Anwar for using the inappropriate and uncalled phrase.

They are not sure whether the phrase is intended to insult or challenge the Indians. He might have wanted to convey the message “if I don’t do anything, are you going to stab me?”. In other words, he was challenging the Indians that they cannot do much other than “stabbing him”.  Something akin to the saying “over my dead body”.

Humiliating Indians

Insulting or humiliating Indians in the country is not something new to Anwar. He scolded a young Indian female student for raising question about the unfair admission to the matriculation system.

He hurt the Hindus by personally presiding over the conversion of a Hindu youth in Klang sometime back.

He uttered the offensive and obnoxious “Keling” word by justifying that the word has its roots in early Malay literature. He went against the past practice of denying the appointment of Indian Tamil minister in the cabinet.

While billions were allocated to the Bumiputera community, pittance were allocated to the Indian community. But the Indian sycophants and yes-men are going around praising Anwar for his excellent service to Indians.

He might have unwittingly and inappropriately launched the recent birth anniversary of Ambedkar who stood against caste and racism in India. But I am not sure whether Anwar is fully and completely liberated from the clutches of race and religion.

Whatever the meaning associated with the phrase “stab me”, Anwar should not humiliate and belittle the Indian community in the country.

If the government cannot assist Indians other than the disgraceful pittance, then this message should be conveyed clear and loud.

Indians might be a numerically small community or they might not be a wealthy community but let us not forget that they have honestly earned their living in the country.

As they say “every dog has its day”. Sometimes I used to wonder whether Anwar and twice former premier Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad have subliminal dislike for Indians. - April 17, 2024

Former DAP stalwart and Penang chief minister II Prof Ramasamy Palanisamy is chairman of the United Rights of Malaysian Party (Urimai) interim council.

The views expressed are solely of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Focus Malaysia

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