Are we really a harmonious multi-racial country?

Abdul Halim Johar
2 min readNov 28, 2018

Much has been said about the recent incident in a temple in Subang Jaya. The news was plastered all over the media, and a lot of speculations are going around in social media on the cause of the incident. There was a suggestion that this is racial tension between the Malays and the Hindus as the supposed perpetrators were a Malays group has barged into the compound and ordered it to be vacated. It was then blown out of proportion and resulted in some casualties. It was reported that a fire brigade member was attacked and is currently fighting for his life.

In the end, the Home Minister has come out and stated the incident wasn’t racially motivated but purely more of a commercial dispute between the landowner and the temple administrator. A chronological explanation on the issue has shown there was a long tussle between the temple administrator and the landowner, as the temple was built on land that has been sold to a developer.

The initial knee-jerk reaction by some parties was somehow uncalled for. Even some of the member in the office has suggested that the incidents were racially motivated. Some of the ministers were even stand in front of the press and accuse the authority has responded late to the incident. The funny part though that none of these individuals have the courtesy to go to the ground and try to bring some order to the commotion. If they are truly the champion of their community, they should have been able to fan out the sentiment so that it won’t escalate further. But somehow, they are more comfortable giving their views from the comfort of the room.

The whole incident is just reek of something bad to come. It just shows how polarised we are as a nation. Regardless of how and what is trying to be portrayed that we are a harmonious multi-racial country, it takes a single incident to showcase that those are just superficial and people can easily be duped to break that glass. And to make matter worse, the elected officials are working in a silo and not in concerted manners. Rather than treat the matter as one cabinet, some quarters are resorting to channelling their grievances on their individual capacity. And this truly reflected badly on the trust that the people have given onto them when there were given to opportunity to lead post-GE14.

No doubt some quarters will take this opportunity and try to rock the boat even further. Some hidden hands may try to further pursue their agenda and play racial sentiments. Unless the present government does not put their act together fast, it is worrying that this incident may be blown out of proportion. And definitely, they can kiss their second term goodbye.