Klang Municipal Council (MPK) has agreed to further discuss an earlier proposal to change the name of Padang Chetty to Dataran Majlis Perbandaran Klang.
Its president Dr Ahmad Fadzli Ahmad Tajuddin made the decision following councillor M. Nalan’s objection when the proposal was announced during Wednesday’s full board meeting.
Nalan was the sole voice objecting to the proposal to rename Padang Chetty at Jalan Bukit Jawa in Little India as soon as Ahmad Fadzli ended his speech.
He had voiced out his displeasure because there had been no consultation with councillors over the matter.
“Councillors were not consulted. Even the Pandamaran assemblyman Tony Leong Tuck Chee has not been consulted on this name change, ” he said.
Ahmad Fadzli then told Nalan that the matter could be brought for discussion at a closed door meeting, which the latter agreed.
In an earlier report on the completion of refurbishment works at Padang Chetty, Ahmad Fadzli told StarMetro that there were plans for an archway to be built there bearing the new name.
Klang MIC division youth chief R. Maheswaran, 42, who visited Padang Chetty to see the final works on the transformation of the public field with its new amenities, commended MPK but did not want the council to change the name to Dataran Majlis Perbandaran Klang.
“We are happy with the improvement done to the field, but not with the proposed name change.
“The name Padang Chetty should be retained as it reflects the contributions of the local south Indian community from the time the British were around, ” he said.
He added that south Indians used the field for gatherings as well as sporting and trading activities.
“It is a place that links to the past.
“A number of the nation’s sportsmen, who excelled in hockey and other sports, had trained at Padang Chetty, ” he said.
Maheswaran added that MPK must explore various approaches to embrace diversity in the town to promote its Sustainable Development Goals 2027 Framework.
Kota Raja MIC Parliamentary coordinator Kajendran Doraisamy, 39, said the field got its name from the Chettiar merchants of Tamil Nadu, who conducted moneylending business across the field at Jalan Raya Barat.
“A name change will erase the identity of the area and its people.
“The name Padang Chetty reflects a cultural heritage that is worth preserving not only as a legacy of a diverse and rich tradition but also as an instrument for forging a national identity that is firmly rooted in the local environment and culture, ” he added.
Attempts to rename the 100-year-old Padang Chetty has been initiated several times.
In October 2019, MPK proposed the field be renamed to Taman Warisan but received objection.
In April 2009, the council renamed the field Laman Sari, with a board put up, but reverted to the old name after much opposition by interested parties.