Malaysian Indian leaders set for fiery political debate
Malaysian Indian Congress (MIC) chief S Samy Vellu has challenged his arch-rival S Subramaniam to a public debate. And the latter has accepted the challenge ahead of the party's plenary next month.india Updated: Aug 24, 2009 13:25 IST
Malaysian Indian Congress (MIC) chief S Samy Vellu has challenged his arch-rival S Subramaniam to a public debate. And the latter has accepted the challenge ahead of the party's plenary next month.
"I will set the venue and time, if he is willing to come," Subramaniam said on Sunday.
He added: "No problem. People can judge. I don't have to explain to the Malaysian Indians because they are intelligent."
Subramaniam is a contender for one of the three deputy president's posts for which elections will take place Sep 12 and media reports say Vellu is determined to stop him in his track.
Vellu had on Saturday challenged Subramaniam to a debate. His move came after Subramaniam said Vellu was acting as though he was "the fourth contender for the post of deputy president".
Subramaniam added that had Vellu filed for the deputy president's post Saturday, the debate would have been even more interesting.
On Vellu asking him to "shut up" and "act as a gentleman" or risk being "walloped left, right and centre" by him, Subramaniam said it was no way for a party president to talk.
He added that although he and Vellu had their differences, there were ways to say them.
"It's over the limit to say these things in public," he was quoted as saying in the New Straits Times.
"Throughout my political career, I have never spoken anything rude, rough or made anyone look un-gentlemanly.
"I don't know any other way to behave because that's the way I have been brought up."
Vellu had also mocked Subramaniam over his supporters playing the Indian drum 'urumi mellam' on nomination day, saying that Subramaniam should also bring elephants, cats and bears next time.
"I don't know why he gets upset with the cultural music. He seems to think there is something evil about them. The group was well restrained and outside the compound. Is it wrong to play such instruments during nomination?" Subramaniam said.