Malaysia to set up hotline for Indians
Following protests by ethnic Indians demanding equal treatment, the hotline will be set up to handle problems faced by the community.india Updated: Nov 30, 2007 16:37 IST
The Malaysian government will set up a telephone hotline for ethnic Indians following massive protests by the community demanding equal treatment, the Malaysian Indian Congress (MIC) said on Friday.
"The hotline will be set up as soon as possible to handle all problems faced by the Indian community," MIC President S Samy Vellu was quoted as saying by the Star newspaper Friday.
"We expect calls regarding problems faced by Tamil schools and Hindu temples. Other problems can also be channelled to the hotline," he said.
Vellu said Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi had also asked MIC to set up a special committee to analyse and address the socio-economic problems faced by the ethnic Indian community.
On Sunday, Hindu Rights Action Force (Hindraf), a Malaysia based rights group, had organised a rally of more than 10,000 ethnic Indians, the largest-ever mass protest by the community, demanding more access to jobs, education, health and against the "systematic destruction" of Hindu temples in the country.
The Indian community in Malaysia has all along alleged that access to housing, education, financial loans and jobs is given to Malays on a preferential basis.
The destruction of Hindu temples has added to their grievances.
Ethnic Indians constitute eight percent of the Malaysian population of 27 million, but they control just 1.5 per cent of the economy.