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MIC Lightweight Confident Of V-P Post

Contributed by Anonymous on Friday, June 16 @ 10:48:30 CDT

MICBy P. Vijian

KUALA LUMPUR, June 14 (Bernama) -- Despite joining the MIC just six years ago, Alex Tiagarasan, known for his bulky frame and clean-shaven head, is going against the big boys of MIC politics by contesting the vice-presidency in party elections on June 24.

He is a relatively new figure in mainstream party politics, but the 52-year-old from the Klang MIC division is oozing with confidence that he could wrest one of the three vice-president seats up for grabs, based on grassroot support.

"People want to see a different set of leaders with different mindsets, who do things differently. The others (candidates) have been there and some have been out but I have not been there. I'm marching with five years in MIC and three years as a branch chairman," Tiagarasan told Bernama, here Wednesday.

Seven candidates are vying for the vice-president posts and Tiagarasan is a greenhorn compared to the other six -- in*****bents Datuk S. Veerasingham and Tan Sri K.S. Nijhar, party secretary-general Datuk S. Sothinathan, MIC veteran Datuk M. Muthupalaniappan, former Si Rusa state assemblyman E. Yohevel and Kuala Lumpur MIC chief Datuk V.K.K.Teagarajan.

Tiagarasan said the Indian community needed active grassroot leaders who could carry out party programmes effectively to improve the living standards of Indians, especially those affected by rural-urban migration.

"Students from Tamil schools are doing very well but they need more support from the community. People from estates were once spoon-fed but now they are lost in the urban environment, with the Indian youths dropping out of school needing our support to help them socio-economically.

"We need a long-term vision to uplift them, especially to raise the Indian equity share to three per cent from the current 1.5 per cent," he added.

Rating his chances as very good, he wants to give a shot at the senior party post and urged supporters to give him the mandate at least once.

"My victory is in the hands of the delegates. They are more mature now compared with 20 years ago. I ask them to give me a chance to serve.

"If I don't serve, they can throw me out three years later, they have the power," he added.

Tiagarasan said he was determined to take on the tough challenge although he did not hold any government position like some of the other contestants, nor was he allied to any camp within MIC.




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