Last attempt to save temple failed

Real sad thing when Malaysiakini reported two days back that Sri Maha Periachiamman Temple in Tambak Paya was demolished by an enforcement team from the Malacca City Council (MBMB), which disregarded a ‘stay order’ signed by two top state officials. The temple was demolished on 30th July at 11.00am leaving behind poor Malaysians who were only asking that their place of worship be spared. It's a puzzle why a temple on a private land with the owners consent is demolished when similar neighboring houses or buildings without building approval were not demolished.

I had the chance to take part in a prayer ceremony organized at the temple two weeks ago. As I can recall, that was also the day the front-page headline of the local newspaper reads our PM's humble message to fellow Malaysians - “Malaysians of all races and religions must be involved in every aspect of our life. They must be together in politics, in government, in schools. That’s the way it was and that’s the way it should be, The tenet is, never Malay, Chinese or Indian affair, the emphasis is, whatever the endeavor, They must involve all races"

Exactly! The same goes to the prayer ceremony organized. There were people from various races and religions turned up to show their support for the event. It was 15th of July 2007 when Mahen, Tony, Haris and myself started our Sunday morning with a journey all the way down to Melaka, heading to Sri Maha Peiachiamman in Tambak Paya to participate in Acara Mesra Rakyat, organized by the temple committee and devotees as their last attempt to save the temple which was facing a big threat of demolition by the Town Council (MBMB- Majlis Bandaraya Melaka Bersejarah - Town Council of Historic Malacca).

The very first moment, we reached Tambak Paya early in the morning, we caught the glimpse of a banner inciting racial tension nearby the temple compound which directly contrary to the Governments’ call for national unity, national integration, racial and religious co-existence and the Prime Minister’s declaration immediately upon taking office that “Malaysia is for all ethnic Communities”

When reached the temple ground, I noticed that the preparations for the prayer ceremony already underway. The prayers started around 8.30 am and there were roughly 100-150 devotees participated in it. The session followed by a mini press conference explaining the whole scenario. Perhaps you may want to read the details here and here.

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