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Najib’s larger-than-life Thaipusam appearance

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Prime Minister Najib Razak is going all out to cultivate Hindu votes, as can be seen from his larger-than-life appearance at Batu Caves, notes Anil Netto.

Najib’s larger than life presence at Batu Caves – Photo courtesy of suarapakatandaily.com

After the Christmas tea-party hoo-ha, Najib has gone out of the way to make his presence felt at Batu Caves with a bang.

(Wonder what his special officer Hardev Kaur, who had advised the church to remove all religious symbols from the rostrum where Najib was supposed to speak at the Christmas tea-party, would make of this…)

Here’s Najib almost drowning under the weight of a humongous garland. Photo credit: The Star
Najib’s lookalike at Batu Caves during Thaipusam 2010 – Photo courtesy of malaysiakini.com

Last year, on Thaipusam eve, Najib also turned up at the same venue, becoming only the second PM to visit the site after his father. But a giant replica of him became an issue – as did the authorities’ refusal to allow the Selangor MB to speak at the same venue.

I still remember the old days when it was Samy Vellu who used to be feted on such occasions. How times have changed.

Amazing what a calendar chockful of upcoming elections can do. The premier probably realises he has his work cut out for him in drawing the minorities back to the BN-fold.

But such larger-than-life appearances have led to murmurs among some of the faithful. It’s a shame that the figure of a politician should loom large over what is essentially a deeply religious and spiritual occasion.

Anil Netto is treasurer of Aliran.

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