KUALA LUMPUR, June 20 ― A Prime Minister’s Department official has claimed that allegations there are “hundreds of thousands” of stateless ethnic Indians in the country were exaggerated, pointing to the public response towards the government’s Mega MyDaftar campaign.
The Special Implementation Task Force manager G.K Anandan was quoted by The Star explaining that only 795 from the total 1,813 individuals who turned up at the campaign were applications for identification documents.
“One of the aims of the campaign is to conclude once and for all, whether there are hundreds of thousands of stateless Indians as claimed,” Anandan reportedly said.
“There has been a continuous effort to help register Indians with documentation issues since 2011, but the figure thus far just doesn’t match up to the claims that there are 300,000 to 450,000 Indians who do not possess MyKad and birth certificates.”
“To say that there are at least 14 per cent of Indians who are stateless, just does not seem possible,” he said in the report, pointing out there are just around 2.1 million ethnic Indians in the country.
Anandan also said that the government should not be solely blamed over the issue of stateless Indians, and the issue can only be addressed if the stateless individuals come forward.
“The problem stems from awareness and social issues … Some may be born out of wedlock and they ended up not registered by their parents, and the problem continues for two to three more generations,” he said.
Anandan said that 7,000 out of 12,000 cases have already been resolved, adding that the full data will be presented by MIC president Datuk Seri Dr S. Subramaniam at the end of the campaign.