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Thursday, January 31, 2013

PKR: RM100 for students ‘cheap gimmick’

PKR vice-president N Surendran argues that the recent cash handouts are no more than a ploy by the ruling BN government with elections around the corner.
PETALING JAYA: The RM100 cash handouts for school children is a ridiculous attempt by the ruling coalition to garner cheap votes, said an opposition leader.
PKR vice-president N Surendran called on the Indian community not to fall prey to such election gimmicks.
“Those who read the mainstream newspapers will notice that most of them showed Indian students receiving the aid.. .and one can clearly see that the government is targeting Indian votes,” he added.
Surendran agreed that this was no coincidence and that Barisan Nasional knew how to “play their cards right”.
“The majority of the Indian community live under the poverty line and the government has not done much to improve their condition… so they are using the school aid to paint a different picture,” he added.
Previous media reports quoted parents expressing their gratitude to the government for the cash handouts and they hoped such generous acts would be forthcoming in the future.
In a previous article by FMT, Education Minister Muhyiddin Yassin was quoted as saying that such aid from the government would continue only if the people voted for the BN government in the upcoming election.
However, Surendran refused to believe Muhyiddin’s claims, reiterating that it was only a “cheap election gimmick”.
“It’s a last minute attempt by the government to win back all votes, not just the Indian votes in particular.
“These handouts are a one-off and it’s disappointing cause there are no long-term benefits. It’s neither significant nor a permanent benefit for the people,” he added.
Instead, he said that the government should concentrate their resources on improving facilities of schools and provide scholarships for bright students, regardless of race.
“We all know that Tamil schools are in the worst conditions ever, and why can’t the amount that was used for the school aid be channelled to improve the state of these schools?” he asked.
Surendran said this in reference to the RM540 million that the government has allocated for the distribution of school aid.

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