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Hindraf’s status may be reviewed

PUTRAJAYA, 11 May 2009: The status of the Hindu Rights Action Force (Hindraf) movement, which had been declared illegal, would be reviewed if the organisation makes an appeal to the Home Ministry to reconsider the status.

Home Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein said for the time being, the (illegal) status remained, as the application to register the movement was rejected before.

“If they want us to reconsider the status they have to make an appeal. When they do make the appeal, I will reconsider the status,” he told reporters after visiting the National Registration Department, here today.

Hishammuddin was asked to comment on the status of the organisation, after all its five leaders were released from detention under the Internal Security Act (ISA), including three who were released on 9 May.

Hishammuddin said the government had tried to be fair by releasing all of them, since they were no more a threat to the country, and they should be fair in their action in future.

Asked about Hindraf’s chairperson P Waythamoorthy’s statement saying he was coming back to Malaysia, Hishammuddin said he would not want to speculate anything on Waythamoorthy’s status, but the ministry would review the application, if there was any.

Asked whether Waythamoorthy, who is currently living in self-imposed exile in London would be arrested if he were to come back, Hishammuddin said he would check the matter with the police.

On Hindraf’s legal adviser and Kota Alam Shah assemblyperson M Manoharan’s statement, saying he was going to sue to government over his detention under the ISA, Hishammuddin said it was not a big deal as suits could be filed by anybody.

“He could have done that before, we’ll face the court if he wants to sue. It’s his right,” he said.

On another matter, Hishammuddin said there would be no more comment about suspected Singaporean terrorist Mas Selamat Kastari, who was caught by Malaysian police last week, to allow investigation to carry on.

“The investigation is a sensitive matter, it involves three different countries and three intelligent agencies, it involves other parties, and both the Deputy Prime Minister and acting Home Minister of Singapore and I have decided we would not comment anymore on the issue of Mas Selamat,” he said.

However, he said the matter would also be the agenda on Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s official visit to Singapore soon. — Bernama

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