Thursday 30 October 2008

This blog was featured in RTM's 'Blog' program.

My previous article, on how Deepavali seems like a forgotten festival, caused this blog to be featured on RTM 1's 'Blog' program on Deepavali eve. Coincidentally, the guest on the show for that day was none other than Putera MIC Coordinator, Mr. P. Kamalanathan. You can see the episode on his blog. Many thanks also to Malaysiakini for publishing the article.

I am currently in Shenzhen, China, for a two week business trip. Due to a heavy schedule and the lack of Internet access, I will not be able to update this blog as often as I would like to. My apologies!

Friday 24 October 2008

Deepavali, the forgotten festival.

A few days ago, Malaysiakini published a letter by a teacher, expressing disappointment over the scheduling of meetings one day prior to Deepavali. The teacher points out that the meetings could have easily been planned in a way that they do not clash with the festivities, given the fact that the exam dates are known well in advance. Apart from malaysiakini, popular blogger B. Mahendran also highlighted the letter.

The Malaysian Commission for Multimedia and Communication, or MCMC, is organizing a three day broadband expo called MyBroadband. This grand expo, starts the day after Deepavali.

Would the education ministry or MCMC, or any organization for that matter, contemplate holding an event one day before or after Hari Raya? Chinese New Year? Christmas? Then why the complete ignorance of Deepavali? Do the Malaysian Indians not matter to the Education Ministry or MCMC? 

Government bodies aside, even the corporate sector seems to have little regard for Deepavali. Yesterday, my family and I went to Metrojaya in Midvalley to do a little last minute Deepavali shopping. My family has been regularly going to Metrojaya for our shopping needs for several years.

Let me show you a photo I took in Metrojaya yesterday evening.

Nice pretty Christmas trees decorating the retail space at Metrojaya. Nothing wrong with that, except this was done three days BEFORE Deepavali. The only indication, if anything, that they remembered Deepavali was the playing of Tamil songs, probably the one CD in their collection, and the display of miserable 'Happy Deepavali' signs at the entrance. That's it.

Needless to say, my family and I walked out of Metrojaya, and won't be shopping in Metrojaya anytime soon. 

Indians need to collectively and boldly show the buying power that we have. We are obviously not a strong buying power, but we definitely ARE a buying power. If all Indians boycott a particular brand or outlet, we CAN teach them a lesson. 

Let's boycott all brands and outlets that do not recognize us. If they can start preparing for Christmas even before Deepavali, like we do not exist, let's go elsewhere.

If some companies can spend millions on advertisements for Hari Raya, Chinese New Year and Christmas, but forget Deepavali exists, let's forget them. 

If your bank does not take up newspaper space to wish you, does not print angpau packets, does not issue new notes, move your money to another bank that does.

If you fill your car tanks at a station that ignores our festival, lets move to another brand that delights us every year with thoughtful greetings.

Let's show them we matter. Let's show them we mean business. Do pass the word around. Happy Deepavali. May the light of Deepavali shine upon each and every one of us, taking us out of the darkness of ignorance and complacency.

Tuesday 14 October 2008

My Home, My PC Program

This Thursday, the Malaysian Indian Technology and Innovation Bureau or MITIB, will launch a program to increase Personal Computer (PC) ownership among Indian families in particular, and Malaysians at large. MITIB, a non-governmental organization initiated by the MIC, in collaboration with Hewlett Packard (HP), will launch this social responsibility program in conjunction with the Deepavali carnival in KL Sentral. Once launched, PCs from as low as RM999 will be available for sale, with 12 months interest-free installments even.

Putera MIC has worked with MITIB closely since the conception of this 'My Home, My PC' program. We feel that encouraging home PC ownership, especially among middle and lower class Indian families, will allow them to get a stronghold in the information technology arena. We sincerely hope Indians will make use of this opportunity. I congratulate MITIB on this remarkable program.

Here's a snapshot from their website

Date: Thursday, Oct 16 '08 onwards, (road-shows to other states will be announced soon)

Time: 8.00pm onwards

Venue:  KL Sentral Arena (Next to Le Meridien Hotel, Opposite Brickfields)


HP Desktop PC Offer:



AMD LE1250

Intel Pentium Dual


512 MB

1 GB

Hard Drive


160 GB HDD

Optical Drive


Super Multi Drive+Lightscribe SATA

Operating System (OS)

Microsoft Vista Starter

Microsoft Vista Basic


17” CRT Monitor with Speaker

17” CRT Monitor with Speaker

Price (RM)






Option to upgrade to 15” TFT Display, please add (RM)



 Note: Microsoft vista Starter provides language option i.e. Tamil, Chinese & English to end user


Special purchase programme will also be introduced shortly to further enhance My PC, My Home initiative where PC purchasers will be able to attain financing from selected banks and through credits cards for a 12 months interest free installment payment, as well as being able to purchase via EPF. 

Wednesday 8 October 2008

As expected, PM to call it quits in March.

Malaysiakini just broke the news that Prime Minister Dato' Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi will not be defending his party post in the coming elections, effectively paving the way for himself to step down as prime minister.

PM not contesting, to quit in March
Oct 8, 08 4:39pm

Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi has decided not to defend his Umno president post and will quit in March next year when the ruling party meets at its annual general assembly.

Abdullah told leaders of the 13 Barisan Nasional component parties that he would be stepping down as prime minister in five months at the BN supreme council meeting in Putra World Trade Centre this afternoon.

“PM to step down in March, DPM to take over. He won’t stand for Umno election,” a component party leader told Malaysiakini via an SMS message. The meeting is still underway.

It is also learnt that the BN leaders are presently thanking Abdullah for his leadership.

As the prime minister was briefing BN leaders on the power transfer plan, scores of Abdullah’s supporters gathered outside the PWTC building to urge him to stay on.

Armed with banners, the supporters are calling on the embattled premier to continue until 2010 amid speculations that he might be forced to step down earlier.

The banners read: 'Hormati peralihan kuasa, elakan perpecahan lagi' (Respect the transition of power, avoid further rifts) and 'Pak Lah, teruskan perjuangan' (Pak Lah, continue the struggle).

The supporters also chanted 'Hidup Pak Lah' (Long live Pak Lah) and 'Pak Lah presiden, Najib timbalan'. (Pak Lah as president, Najib as deputy).

Shortest-lived prime minister

Should he resigned in March 2009, Abdullah would be the shortest-lived prime minister, serving a total of five years five months.

Third prime minister Hussein Onn, who resigned in 1981 to make way for Dr Mahathir Mohamad ostensibly due to health concerns, served for five years six months.

Abdullah, who took power on Oct 31, 2003 from Mahathir, won a landslide victory in the March 2004 general election only to suffer an unprecedented defeat four years later.

He was initially buoyed by a groundswell of support for his promises of reform after two decades of hardline rule under Mahathir - the country’s longest serving leader.

However, he was quickly seen as weak and ineffective after failing to come to grips with corruption, high crime rates and inefficient bureaucracy which he had vowed to address.

Donate your old books for a good cause

Many Tamil schools in Malaysia lack one of the most basic education item. Books. Tamil schools, especially partially aided and privately aided schools, often have to stretch their dollars and cents so thin, that they simply cannot afford to stock their libraries, if they have one, that is. Yet, Tamil schools students have time and again proven that they can rise above the odds and compete at par with their government school peers.

Putera MIC wants to give these children a little bit to cheer about. We want to give them encouragement. We want to give them hope to excel. We know that the Indian community can only excel through education. We ask not for money, we ask only for your old, used books, sitting in a box somewhere in your storeroom, collecting dust.

Putera MIC is embarking on a two-month campaign to collect books, to be donated to Tamil school libraries around the country. We call upon kind hearted Malaysians to give us any books, as long as they are still readable and suitable for 7 to 13 year olds. If you have a sizeable amount of books, we'll even come over and pick it up from you. You may donate textbooks, reference books, dictionaries, storybooks, anything. Whatever you can afford to part with.

We have been operating for slightly more than a year, funding our activities from our own pockets mostly. We will continue doing so. We ask not a cent from you. We will fork out what is needed for the logistics of this campaign from our own pockets. But we humbly ask you to donate your books to us. Nothing more.

More details of this campaign is available at including contact details of our members involved in this program. I thank you for all your contributions. You have the power to bring smiles to the faces of these bright children. You have the power to engage actively in helping the community.

Thank you very much.

Update: Book Donation Contact Person

Thanasekaran @ 012 4801989 (Project Director)

Umabaran @ 012 5875215 (Penang),
Saravanan @ 012 3375729 (Johor)
Maheswaran @ 012 4630320 (Kedah),
Rama @ 012 6957150 (Melaka)
Gobi @ 012 4575848 (Perak),
Dr.Thina @ 017 2802767 (Negeri Sembilan)
Parry @ 012 3402749 (Selangor),
Visirajan @ 012 9715502 (KL)