Malaysian Indian Congress leadership on notice

Singapore, May 9 (IANS) The leadership of the Malaysian Indian Congress (MIC) has been asked to take responsibility for the party’s dismal performance in the country’s general elections held May 5.

The MIC won four parliamentary seats, the same number it held prior to going to the polls, and five state seats, down from seven it held earlier.

The party was formed in 1946 and is one of the oldest political parties in the southeast Asian nation.

It is one of the three major constituents of the ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) coalition, the other two being United Malays National Organisation and the Malaysian Chinese Association.

Jaya Parthiban, adviser to Wanita MIC — the women’s wing of MIC, and political commentator Denison Jayasooria said Malaysian Indians are losing confidence in the MIC despite increasingly supporting the BN.

“MIC cannot be proud of its achievement as the party lost two state seats this time,” Partibhan was quoted as saying by The Star newspaper.

“MIC did not do well, so who is going to take responsibility for the poor performance?”

She said the party should give a senate post to Wanita MIC because of its contributions ahead of the polls.

Jayasooria said several MIC candidates lost by big margins to Indian candidates from other parties.

“MIC faced Indians from the opposition in five parliamentary seats but managed to win only the Cameron Highlands and Tapah seats while losing the Sungai Siput, Subang and Kapar seats,” he was quoted as saying.

Jayasooria said dramatic changes were needed at the party’s divisional level to identify younger people who can be groomed to lead the party.

Ethnic Indians comprise a little over seven percent of Malaysia’s total population of nearly 30 million.

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