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H Selangor elections: MIC to make its case

Contributed by Anonymous on Thursday, April 01 @ 11:11:53 CDT

2010/04/01 Analysis by V. Shankar Ganesh and Patrick Sennyah THE Hulu Selangor parliamentary by-election has put MIC in a quandary as it has to deal with two issues — call for the seat be given to Umno and decide who the MIC candidate will be. The party has to deal with these issues simultaneously and if it can’t settle both amicably — it can either kiss the seat goodbye or lose the by-election.

Despite the claim by MIC president Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu that support for the party was strong, the momentum calling for the seat to be given to Umno is gaining.
Selangor Umno sources say the party feels they have a better chance of wresting back the seat from PKR but was sceptical on whether they can do so under the MIC banner.
The talk is that Umno is ready to give another seat to the MIC in the next general election.
Some party members also say that MIC should do the right thing and give it to Umno for the greater good of Barisan Nasional.
They say this by-election is vital as it will be used as a yardstick to see whether BN’s goal to regain Selangor has showed signs of progress or still remains a dream.
At the moment, most Pakatan Rakyat and BN supporters say capturing the state will be an uphill battle for the BN, not least that it is in the Pakatan domain so to speak.
However, a win will boost the morale of BN in Selangor and ensure its goal of regaining the state remains on track.
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak and Samy Vellu are scheduled to meet again soon to resolve this issue. MIC sources say the decision will be announced by the weekend.
Crucial whether the seat goes to Umno or MIC is the position of MIC deputy president Datuk G. Palanivel as the BN candidate.
There have been favourable stories about Palanivel. One is that he has been working for the constituents, despite his loss in the last general election.
Some Selangor Umno leaders agree that the seat should remain with MIC so as not to cause any upset among BN component part i e s.
State opposition leader and former menteri besar Datuk Seri Dr Mohd Khir Toyo said it was not worth taking the seat from the MIC.
He said BN should regain the seat using the old tried and tested method — hard work and sincerity.
Many MIC members share the same sentiment and said the byelection will be “personality based” rather than “party based”.
A senior MIC member said if the party decides to name Palanivel, it will be a wise decision.
“Even though some say that the Indian community may not have warmed up to the MIC yet, there are clear signs that Palanivel is well received in Hulu Selangor.
“Ever since the last general election, I daresay the MIC has yet to win back the confidence of the voters, but in this case, it will be the candidate that matters and not the party he represents.” Palanivel has been the member of parliament for Hulu Selangor for two terms until he was defeated by the late Dr Zainal Abidin Ahmad from PKR by a slim 198 majority in the political tsunami which swept the country in 2008.
Dr Zainal died of brain cancer last Thursday, paving the way for a byelection.
The senior MIC member said the dissatisfaction in 2008 was aimed at the MIC and the voters were all out to send this message across.
“Despite this, Palanivel only lost by 198 votes, while he won the seat in 2004 by a whopping 14,483 vote major ity,” said the veteran member.

Youth wing supports Palanivel's bid
KUALA LUMPUR: Deputy MIC Youth chief V. Mugilan has denied claims stating he is keen to be nominated as the MIC candidate for the Hulu Selangor seat in the upcoming by-election. He said they were merely rumours spread by certain quarters with the intention to undermine his mentor, Datuk G. Palanivel, who has been nominated by MIC to contest the seat.

Mugilan, who is also the Hulu Selangor MIC division Youth chief, said he stood solid behind Palanivel, who had brought him into the party and supported him over the years.

"I am his loyalist. There is no such thing as me lobbying for the seat," he said at a press conference here yesterday.

"If Palanivel does not get the seat, then I will resign as deputy Youth chief and Hulu Selangor Youth chief," he said, adding that he would back his division chief's bid to win the seat which he lost in the 2008 general election.

Mugilan said the rumours were circulated by irresponsible parties to prevent the possibility of Palanivel winning the seat and strengthening his position to become the future MIC president.
He also said there was no fallout between them following the rumours, and this could be attested to the fact that he had met Palanivel on two occasions in the past week to prepare for the by-election.

MIC Youth chief T. Mohan said the wing would give their full support to Palanivel as the party's candidate for the by-election.

Mohan stressed that Palanivel, who is former women, family and community development deputy minister, is the right candidate for the job, based on experience and hard work.

He added that Palanivel had also poured in a lot of effort into the constituency during the four terms he served as a Barisan Nasional elected representative.

Mohan also said that he was confident that the Youth wings of all the BN component parties would work as a team in the upcoming by-election, as they had done in the Bagan Pinang by-election won by the BN.

The Hulu Selangor seat, which has about 63,000 voters, has three state constituencies -- Hulu Bernam, Batang Kali and Kuala Kubu Baru -- with all three seats won by the BN in the 2008 general election.

The majority of the voters in Hulu Selangor are Malay (33,691 voters or 51.17 per cent), followed by Chinese (16,915 or 26.18 per cent) and Indians (12,549 or 19.43 per cent).

There are also about 1,000 Orang Asli voters.****themalaysianinsider

Three independents in fray for Hulu Selangor Indian vote By Baradan Kuppusamy KUALA LUMPUR, April 1 — At least three MIC mid-level leaders are preparing to stand as independents in the Hulu Selangor by-election, in a move which could spoil the chances of MIC deputy president Datuk G. Palanivel if he is selected as the Barisan Nasional (BN) candidate. Although they deny it sources close to the three said they are contesting for various reasons — out of spite for MIC president Datuk Seri S Samy Vellu, disagreement over the selection of Palanivel as candidate and in revenge for being treated “like dirt” by the MIC. “I am not afraid. Let them sack me from the MIC for contesting,” said S. Ananthan, a delegate in the Bukit Bintang MIC division that is headed by former FT MIC chairman Datuk VKK Teagarajan. Ananthan is a close confidant of Teagarajan but denied he was contesting in Hulu Selangor at the latter’s behest. “Teagarajan has nothing do with my decision to contest in Hulu Selangor. I want to make a point by contesting. I am offering myself as an alternative candidate if voters are upset with both the Barisan and the Pakatan,” he told The Malaysian Insider went contacted today. Teagarajan, who started in textiles before branching into hotels and properties, has virtually ended his career in the MIC, after failing to be nominated to contest as MP and become a deputy minister. In recent months he has became deeply disenchanted with the MIC and was veering towards possibly joining PKR. He, however, is still undecided whether to sign up with the opposition party. Political sources said he might have influenced Ananthan, his confidant, to contest and break the Indian vote, as a favour to PKR and its adviser Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim before ditching the MIC. Indians make up 19 per cent of the 73,000 voters in Hulu Selangor. Ananthan, a former journalist, is a veteran MIC member and well known in its circles across the country. Another MIC leader likely to be an independent contestant in Hulu Selangor is V. Subramaniam, who stood for the MIC vice-president’s post in the party elections in October and lost. He is young, energetic and not one to toe the Samy-line and is therefore outspoken and disliked. He was in Datuk S. Subramaniam’s line-up but lost in the contest. When contacted today Subramaniam, the former Kelana Jaya MIC Division deputy chairman, said he was keen to contest as an independent to offer voters an alternative. He is believed to be close to Klang businessman Omms Thiagarajan who is an associate of Datuk S. Subramanian, the former MIC deputy president. “I admit I am close to Omms. And if Omms asks me to contest I will stand,” he said went contacted today. “I am keeping an open mind.” It is unclear where Omms stands politically because he was patron and supporter of the Malaysian Makkal Sakthi Party of Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak and at the same time he also met Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim and held exploratory discussions. A third spoiler for Palanivel is likely to be V. S. Chandran, who in 2006 sported a long beard for six months and shaved it off only after Palanivel won the MIC deputy presidency, in a mark of respect and honour. Recently however he has turned against Palanivel, blaming him of not doing enough for Indians in Hulu Selangor. Chandran, the chairman of MIC Bandar Utama in Batang Kali, was a former deputy chairman of the Hulu Selangor MIC division for six years and was a staunch loyalist of Palanivel. He could not be reached for comment.



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