2 ethnic Indians fined for participating in rally

Updated on Sep 23, 2008 04:49 PM IST

A court today fined two ethnic Indians Rs 12,000 each after they pleaded guilty to failing to disperse from an illegal gathering organised by Hindraf late last year.

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PTI | By, Kuala Lumpur

A court on Tuesday fined two ethnic Indians Rs 12,000 each after they pleaded guilty to failing to disperse from an illegal gathering organised by the Hindu Rights Action Force (Hindraf) here late last year.

Meanwhile, 24 others maintained their plea of not guilty to the same charge.

The Judge ordered that S Veejayakumara and R Sivakumar to be jailed for three weeks if they failed to pay the fine.

The two, who had earlier pleaded not guilty to the charge, changed their plea today after their counsel sent a representation to the Attorney-General's Office last Tuesday.

The judge said although the two changed their plea after the prosecution had called 12 witnesses to testify, the court took into consideration that their action would save the court's time and cost.

A total of 54 people were charged with the same offence when Hindraf organised a rally in which more than 20,000 ethnic Indians participated to protest against alleged marginalisation on November 25 last year.

Five Hindraf leaders continue to be held under the widely criticised Internal Security Act for organising the rally.

Indians make up 7.8 per cent of the 27 million population in the country, which comprises of 60 per cent of the Malays. Ethnic Chinese form 25 per cent of the population.

Last week, 27 people were fined 12000 rupees each by the Sessions Court after they pleaded guilty to the same charge.

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