KUALA LUMPUR: A remark on the ashes of Communist Party of Malaya (CPM) leader Chin Peng being returned to Malaysia set off an altercation in the Dewan Rakyat.
Debating on Budget 2020 at the committee stage, armed forces veteran and Padang Serai MP M Karupaiya had said there was nothing wrong in any party bringing back the ashes.
"In my point of view, there is no problem for us with the ashes. It is already gone. If we bring it here, it brings no meaning to us.
"As a Malaysian, we respect him although he is an enemy. We give respect because he was born here, that's all," said Karupaiya when debating the Defence Ministry's allocation.
It was reported that the ashes of the CPM secretary-general, who had insisted on being buried on home soil, was returned to Malaysia and dispersed at two locations in Perak.
However, Opposition lawmakers, including Datuk Alexander Nanta Linggi (GPS-Kapit) then asked if Karupaiya was being insensitive to the past killings of Malaysian armed forces by the communists.
Datuk Shamsul Anuar Nasara (BN-Lenggong) had earlier asked Karupaiya whether he agreed to allow Chin Peng's ashes to enter the country.
Karupaiya said the communists had fought the Japanese and continued to stay back to fight the British forces.
"They came here not to attack us, they came to defend us," he said.
Awang Hashim (PAS-Pendang) then stood up to interject, asking why the Communists did not leave after defeating the Japanese and continued to use brutal action to attack and kill Malaysian army.
Asking for calm, Speaker Tan Sri Mohamad Ariff Md Yusof said it was just a debate for the Defence Ministry at the committee stage.
"If you want to talk about history, please find another platform," he said.
Did you find this article insightful?