I am puzzled. Normally, the police carry out investigations. They prepare investigation papers. They send them to the AG’s chambers. They wait for his certification. Maybe, I am a little daft here on the legal processes. I would have thought that the AG will only produce certification AFTER receiving investigation papers.
But the AG, Tan Sri Abdul Gani Patail has classified the death of an unknown Indian, A. Kugan, as a case of willful murder. When the IGP ordered a second autopsy that would suggest that investigation is ongoing. That means no conclusions or summary of the investigations are completed yet. But even as a second autopsy was ongoing, the AG jumped the gun, saying it is murder. As of today, the IGP says, investigations are still ongoing.
The AG’s preemptive announcement will go some way to calm growing unhappiness among Indians. The general view is that there seems to be a deliberate policy of police victimization and discrimination against the community.
But where would that announcement place the Police? Now, will they carry out investigations to prove what the AG said is correct? Will the intention to prove what’s said by the nation’s highest legal officer is correct more important that finding out the murderer/s? The police will now have no choice but to uncover and hopefully produce evidence that indeed a murder has taken place.
But was Ghani’s announcement designed to diffuse a potentially eruptive political time bomb, or was he motivated to find out the perpetrators of what really is just plain murder? If his motives are the former, then it is not primarily the truth that we are after, but political convenience. The crime of murder is assigned secondary importance.
I am not one who makes light of such a heinous crime such as murder. The bereaved family has every right to be violently agitated and no one should judge how they chose to ventilate their grief and anger. The murder of a human being, irrespective of his ethnic origins is reprehensible and must be universally condemned.
But there are also lessons to be learnt here. I just want the Malays to take a leaf from the Indian community’s response. It seems that a loud and explosive response is the only way to get the government’s attention. If it was one Malay who was a victim of such brutality, the matter would have been easily attributed to the will of God. That would be the end of the story. The police will be absolved and the Malays will seclude themselves in their lonely grief. In a year’s time, all would be forgotten. In the early late 70’s I remember an incident where a Malay student was shot dead by police bullet while walking along the Odeon cinema. The parents accepted the police narration of the event and further accepted that as a will of God. The Malays are easily placated. Is the Malay a victim of his own virtue? Has UMNO taken advantage of our docility?
I am urging the Malays to no longer be that pliant and easily satiated group. They must also articulate their anger, grief and frustrations vociferously. UMNO derives its strength and relevance from all of us. And if they should be found wanting, in giving expression to our interests, then they have lost our trust and mandate.
What happened to A Kugan should serve as an abject lesson as to how a Malay should behave. Behave as though, it is our RIGHT to be heard!