‘Decision was made to shield Pakatan’

Syed Jaymal Zahiid & Jimadie Shah Othman | Feb 10, 09 5:23pm

The resignation of V Arumugam as Kedah state exco and Bukit Selembau
assemblyperson has been described as a “sacrifice” for the state government
led by Pakatan Rakyat.

PAS Kedah secretary Muhamad Yusof Husin told Malaysiakini that Arumugam’s
resignation was caused by more than the threats he has alleged to have
received.

“It is an indication of Arumugam’s unwillingness to let issues in his
private life be used as ammunition to destabilise the Pakatan-led
government,” he said.

In recent weeks, certain details of his personal life have allegedly been
used to force him to step down as an elected representative.

Asked what he thought of Arumugam’s refusal to announce the resignation
himself, Muhamad Yusof said: “Probably he was too embarrassed to face the
public.”

The resignation, coming after weeks of speculation that he would be giving
up politics altogether, was announced yesterday by Kedah Menteri Besar
Azizan Abdul Razak.

Although Arumugam has tendered his resignation, Muhamad Yusof believes that
the former remains loyal to his party, PKR, and the Kedah government.

Early this month, Arumugan had lodged a police report claiming that there
was an attempt to kidnap him and that he and his officers had received
numerous threats.

Arumugam in India

It is learnt that Arumugam – who has not been seen since last week – is
currently in Chennai, India, with his family. The arrangement, funded by
PKR, is for security reasons according to party members.

It is also learnt that the threats against Arumugam were not made by BN or
Umno but were from the Indian Malaysians in his former constituency.

Sources claimed that those involved were members of the re-branded Hindu
Rights Action Force movement, now known as Makkhal Sakthi or People’s Power.

“They are mad at him because he hasn’t performed as their state
representative. That is why he has been receiving threats – not from BN or
Umno, the threats are from people in Makkhal Sakthi,” sources said.

Arumugam contested as an Independent in the last general election. He
emerged as candidate at the last minute when the returning officer rejected
the nomination papers of Saiful Izham Ramli of PKR on technical grounds.

Arumugam won the Bukit Selambau seat by defeating Barisan Nasional/MIC
candidate S Krishnan with a majority of 2,362 votes.

He then joined PKR and was appointed state exco in charge of domestic trade
and consumer affairs, Siamese and Indian affairs, unity and plantation
workers.

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