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    DAP lawmaker tells Harapan to address decline in Indian support

    (Updated )

    A DAP leader has called on Pakatan Harapan to address a drop in support from the Indian community after last year’s general election.

    DAP deputy secretary-general and Batu Gajah MP V Sivakumar said in a statement today that Indian Malaysians had overwhelmingly backed Harapan in GE14, with some claiming the figure could be as high as 80 percent of registered voters.

    Traditionally seen as a vote bank for the previous BN administration, Sivakumar said a change in support from Indian voters towards then-opposition Pakatan Rakyat coalition had started since the 2008 general election, before ultimately contributing to BN's downfall last year.

    "Recently, the stand of the Indian community was the subject of popular questions. Are the Indians still loyal supporters of the new Harapan government?

    "In the last three by-elections in Cameron Highlands, Semenyih and Rantau, it was found that there was an erosion in the number of Indian votes," he said.

    "Although a majority of Indians still support Harapan, there is a small group that has changed their stand.

    "The Indians have very high expectations of the new government. They have hopes for opportunities in the public sector, business, construction, education and others," he said, adding these include promises listed in Harapan's election manifesto.

    After 11 months of being in power, Sivakumar said this group has turned away in disappointment after their expectations were not met.

    "This signal is clearly shown in the most recent Rantau by-election lost by the Harapan candidate," he said, although noting that it was not too late for Harapan to take measures to address the declining support.

    In last Saturday's by-election, acting Umno president Mohamad Hasan retained the Negeri Sembilan state seat against Harapan's Dr S Streram and two others.

    Indians make up 27 percent of the voters in the constituency.

     

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