Tuesday, November 4, 2008


Yesterday, I was shocked and dismayed over a sms text, which was making its rounds in the Klang Valley alleging that Dewan Bandaraya Kuala Lumpur had demolished a temple at Jalan Masjid India. The sms was incorrect and I think was just to provoke the community into reacting. I held a press conference at the site of the said temple to clarify the issue. I did this in my capacity of the Federal Territories deputy minister. Below is a Bernama story on the matter.

KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 3 (Bernama) -- Federal Territories Deputy Minister Datuk M. Saravanan today urged Hindus not to fall for an SMS text in circulation, stating that Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) had demolished a Hindu temple located near Masjid India, here.
He said DBKL's enforcement unit had only demolished the old structure of the Arulmigu Sri Bathrakaliaman temple today, after allocating a piece of land to enable the temple authorities to carry out the relocation exercise.
"The new temple is just beside the old one and all the deities have been
moved to the new temple.
"DBKL today only demolished the empty structure of the old temple which was not utilised by the temple authorities. So, accusing DBKL of demolishing a temple is totally wrong. They only tore down the structure of the old temple, without any deities inside," he told reporters after visiting the site here, today.
Saravanan, who is also MIC information chief, said DBKL, which came under the ministry' purview, had on several occasions given notice to the temple management on the demolition exercise to make way for a road widening project in Jalan Masjid India.
The temple management chairman, Kanmani Undalam, through a letter to DBKL
had asked the authority not to demolish the old temple before Oct 31 and promised to vacate the premises on or before the said date.
Copies of the letter was furnished to the media during Saravanan's visit.
Following the request from the temple management, DBKL security and enforcement director Rolan Abd Rahman, in a letter replied that DBKL had agreed to the terms of the temple management and would not demolish the temple before Oct 31.
Saravanan said Rolan's letter also specifically stated that the old temple
structure would be demolished today, Nov 3.
"Spreading the SMS saying that DBKL had demolished a temple is a total distortion of truth. It is the work of irresponsible people. Notice had been given. A new temple is just beside the old one and furthermore only the structure of the old temple was demolished. That is the truth," he added.
Saravanan said the ministry would keep to its assurance that no place of worship in the federal capital would be demolished without proper relocation.