Friday, January 28, 2011

Interlocked Action

The New Straits Times carried a news concerning a raging issue this morning. The opening para goes:

(Malay novel) Interlok will be retained as a literature textbook but sections deemed sensitive to the Indian community will be amended

And it explained:

Federation of National Writers Association (Gapena) executive secretary Abdul Aziz Mohd Ali said the body supported the ministry’s decision to use Interlok as a textbook.

He said the only acceptable change that could be made to the novel was to add a glossary for the word “pariah” to better explain it.

This was done especially after initiated by the hardworking, nay, overworking Malaysian Indian Congress (MIC) party, which still does not sit well with the Hindu community, as the umbrella group Hindu Sangam expressed “outrage” according to online news portal Malaysia Kini.

They should be. How could they? I say don’t give up. Most of the protesters may have never read the novel, or most of them can’t even speak one full sentence in proper Malay despite living in Malaysia their whole life. Never mind, don’t give up.

In fact, I have further recommendations to make when it comes to unhealthy use of caste names in popular culture. Here we go:

Ban organisations with caste names

Believe it or not there are organisations or clubs in Malaysia that represents specific caste. And its very easy to spot them, just go through the Tamil language newspapers, they are always organizing a dinner, a tribute fest, or maybe ear piercing ceremony or something.

Apart from representing their community and doing anything for them, like putting up an advertisement praising any of its members for their great deeds, like opening up a restaurant, I feel there is no need to have caste name in their organisations. Maybe instead of _____ Organisation, you can change it to Organisation of Members, Whose Ancestors Used To Lend Money.

Ban movies with caste names.

Two of the biggest Tamil language films to come out in the 90s was Chinna Gounder and Thevar Magan. Blatant use of caste names. And never mind that the latter is anti-violence and pro-education, it has caste name in it. So, what else ban it!

In fact, you should ban any films with actors with caste name in it. And the biggest offender of them all would be late supervillain M.N. Nambiar, whose single name is a caste name. That means you have to ban about 267,851 films. Phew, you have work cut out for you, government.

Ban other books with caste names

How many other books have caste names in them? In fact, how many Tamil language books have caste name in them? Ban them! Don’t read them or try to understand the context of those books, just employ someone who can identify those names and urge the government to ban those books. Act now!

Ban websites with caste name in the content.

Online wikipedia has given explanations to various caste names. Ban them! How insensitive of the online encyclopedia to the Hindu folks. How can they even list those caste names in the online source for knowledge to the entire world!

Get someone to write a search engine program that can track down all the sites, apart from wiki, that actually has caste names in it and ban them all to hell.

Ban people with caste names.

My grandpa was a smart man, he knew this was coming so he refused to hand over his caste name to his children. In fact, his own children were too pre-occupied with Hindi film stars names** to give us caste names.

But there are a bunch of folks walking around with caste names with them. In fact, I personally know some who actually do not have it, on the account that their own parents had similar strategy as ours, but use it anyway for god knows what reason. Maybe it helps with their digestion.

So ban them. Arrest them. Lock them up and make them watch human rights films on the loop 24 hours 7 days a week. Humanistic films like Gorrila’s In The Mist.

I got many other suggestions, but right now I need to seriously talk to my dad, because his identity card says, Premakumaran son of Shankaran Nair. I got my black marker ready.

**Consider some of my cousins names: Malini, Suraj, Kalpana, Sanjeev, Devanan, my brother Shubash and think of 70s Hindi films. And of course, I owe Hirtik Roshan’s dad some royalty.

Note: You must be confused about the pix above. I did google image search for caste, it was one of the pictures that turned up. I swear.


Uthaya Sankar SB said...

(Education Minister) said the only acceptable change that could be made to the novel was to add a glossary for the word “pariah” to better explain it.

WRONG! It's the Gapena guy's comment.

Rakesh Kumar said...

Okay, will edit it. Thanks for reading and correcting Uthaya.

plum said...

You are named after Kiruthigai's Dad? Ha Ha hA - no matter what happens now, I'll always have this to taunt you grouch :) But you are lucky - your poor brother is named after Subash Ghai. Subash Ghai, the crocodile!
And why did they name your cousin after Kalapana Iyer, the vamp?

Rakesh Kumar said...

Plum, mooch! Thanks for reading anyway. I am not sure about the Kalpana part. My aunties are weird.

Gopalakrishnan Nair said...


Give me the name of the organisation that carry out ear piercing ceremonies. I get fascinated by those kind of events...

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