KUALA LUMPUR: MIC president Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu is up in arms over the recent sale of Amanah Saham Malaysia (ASM) shares, claiming that it was dominated by the rich.
The reason why the one billion shares had been snapped up in less than two hours, he said, was that several rich buyers had bought them up in bulk.
There should have been fair distribution of the shares, particularly for the Indian community.
The shares that went that day made the rich richer and the poor poorer in terms of opportunities, Samy Vellu said.
The Indian community, he said, needed the shares to improve their income.
But at the rate things are going, should the Government decide to launch another round of ASM shares, they will still not have a chance to buy the shares, he said after chairing a central working committee at MIC headquarters here yesterday.
Samy Vellu, who is also Works Minister, said although the shares were sold on the open market, the poor should have been given a chance to buy them.
He said he planned to lead a delegation soon to see Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi to present a document on the unfair distribution of ASM shares.
He said he would also present a document to the Prime Minister on the MIC's programmes for the development of socio-economic activities for the Indian community.
Samy Vellu said studies done by the MIC on the economic performance of Indians showed a significant drop in equity holdings from 1.5% in 2000 to 1.2% in 2004.
One of the reasons for this was slow equity development the Indians' equity holdings went up by 5.6% against 12.4% for the Chinese and 12.4% for bumiputras, he said.
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