Monday, November 12, 2007


Episode I

It was raining. As I was walking through masjid jamek tunnel I can hear loud voices of the Police. I could see the demonstrators were standing, filling every space of the place. I was wakling in the rain to get to my assigned group.Dataran Merdeka was already blocked by the Police, hoping that the crowd would be on a stand still. We were not breathing the normal air, I got a little drowsy and my eyes started to itch. It was the tear gas. The only word I could think of was “BARBARIC”!).

I Met Puspa, Mr Yeo Yang Poh, Fahri and Lionel in front of the Bar Council. We proceeded to Masjid Negara and continued walking in the rain towards Istana Negara where the meorandum was to be handed over to the was along walk, indeed, but nobody was complaining. We could see people who got stuck in the traffic looking at us with that “what on earth could have possessed this bunch of people in black and white to walk along the higway” look. Some were staring at our tag and I could see the lips uttering “PEMERHATI…”.The feeling was indescribable.

I witnessed the rise of the people who have faith in democracy peacefully assembled on that historical day to reclaim their rights as guaranteed by none other than the Constitution. It doesn’t take a genius to understand that. They walked the long miles to get the message across. They walked the long miles to deserve a draconian treatment by the authority. The still walked, in faith.

My whole family was worried about me, but I kept on telling them that I have these 50,000 people to back me up .I understand their concern and I appreciate their supports. Thank you so much for believing in me. People at home witnessed this event live from al Jazeera news which we could hardly see in our mainstream media which is rather counterfactual. It’s a sad reality, and it has always been.

It was a peaceful assembly. We were there to witness this. Rakyat/the people have proven them wrong. Threats after threats, and nothing could change our stand. I’m proud to see before my own eyes the culture of civil disobedience demonstrated by a group of committed people. They are committed to their beliefs. They are committed to justice. This culture had, through out history released those oppressed by a system that is rather abusive than protective. This culture had set the Africans free from Apartheid. This culture had enlightened those fighting for independence. And it has always been.

Episode II

After we dispersed, Dipen, Mr Yeoh, Mogan, Dara, Puspa and me walked to KL central and we had tea at the Mamak shop nearby. We talked about so many things and suddenly we got a message asking us to get to the secretariat for a brief follow up. We walked to KL Sentral and headed to the Secratariat. We got down at Masjid Jamek and many people were stranded outside. The lrt service had been deliberately stopped. It was an inspiring moment to share our feelings on the event. As Puspa and me were leaving for prayers, we got a message from Kak Lat, asking us to gather at IPK KL police station to help those who got arrested at the assembly.

We got there at 7 and we waited for hours, as we were not allowed to see them. It’s nothing new that various violations of human rights can be spotted in less than 5 hours. At about 8pm, 5 were released with bruises and cuts. Again, it’s nothing new.

Episode III

Johnson and I accompanied 3 of them to HKL to get medical treatment and to lodge police reports on this abuse. We waited for hours to get everything done. The gentlemen told us that there was one guy who was beaten by the police and broke his leg who was also brought to the same hospital. As Johnson and I were getting lost on our way to find the ward, he asked me one question, “is this your first time doing this”-“Yes, and I always wanted to do this”. We managed to find the guy.

I was assigned to advise him and the moment I talked to the wife, she broke down and tears kept coming out. I almost cried but Amer told me to be strong for them. I consoled the wife and told her that we are all here to help her out. Then, she started to smile a little and I was so relieved. and i managed to get them to agree to lodge a police report against the police as they have been constantly harassed by unknown individuals who keep appearing the moment i left the family, telling them not to talk to any lawyers, not to lodge any reports and so's nothing new that harassment would take place after gross violation of human rights.

It was a bittersweet experience for me. Waiting for hours in the hospital and in the police station taught me a priceless lesson. Being a lawyer puts me in a position to help those in need. It imposes responsibility. Responsibility entails obligation. It was an ongoing struggle. It was a long walk. There’s only one thing that keeps us strong. Faith. And people who are always there with us, for better or for worst.

Id like to thank Kak Lat, Eric, Johnson, and Puspa for everything, and the makan2 at banana leaf place at 12 was great!

To abang n kakak, thanks for being supportive.

to nad, thanks for dropping me off and for the umbrella.

to shuwy, thanks for the concern.

to far, thanks for accompanying me to the hospital yesterday.

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