Peaceful protest to protect Vivekananda Ashram in Brickfields cancelled


A PEACEFUL protest planned to be held at the Vivekananda Ashram in Brickfields, Kuala Lumpur on Thursday (March 28) has been cancelled as the organiser had failed to get a permit to gather outside the premises.

However, a number of people had gathered outside the building in the morning to protest against the designation of certain parts of the Little India township as major commercial areas in the draft Kuala Lumpur Local Plan 2040 (KLLP2040).

One of the protesters was Pusat Aduan Rakyat Malaysia (PAR) chairman Datuk A Chandrakumanan, who said that the land in Brickfields is valuable and there would be parties interested in developing it.

“Much of Brickfields has been developed. We need some places to be retained to preserve the heritage and identity of this place. Please do not demolish all the old buildings because of some parties that want to profit," he said.

“Vivekananda Ashram is a heritage site. There is also a Tamil school behind the building. “With major developments in the surrounding area, there is no surety that the adjacent buildings would not be affected,” added Chandrakumaran.

Subang PKR adviser Murali Subramaniam said despite the Vivekananda Ashram gazetted as a heritage site, the land was not indicated as such in the KLLP2040.

“The Vivekananda Ashram land is designated as a major commercial area too. Does this mean that there is a possibility that it may be developed,” he added.

Pertubuhan Kebajikan dan Amal India Baru Malaysia president U.Thamotharan said the building must be retained as a physical reminder of the presence of Indians there.

“Little India is a new feature. Historical buildings and landmarks must be preserved,” he said.

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