Thaipusam: Chariot only allowed to travel to Batu Caves without procession, Annuar clarifies


KUALA LUMPUR (Bernama): The National Security Council (NSC) only allows the chariot carrying the statue of Lord Murugan to travel to Batu Caves without a procession in conjunction with this year’s Thaipusam celebrations, says Tan Sri Annuar Musa.

The Federal Territories Minister said this was done as a mark of respect for Hindus celebrating Thaipusam.

"The NSC has discussed in detailed and agreed to allow the chariot to travel to Batu Caves at a stipulated time, which is either at midnight or early morning, with no procession and for the return journey to be carried out in a similar manner.

"Only 10 people (temple personnel) are allowed (to accompany the chariot), with no music or procession, and with no stops anywhere. It is to be carried out in a simple and efficient manner,” he said after handing over 15 Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) home ownership offer letters to Kwong Tong squatters here Sunday (Jan 24).

The function was streamed live on the official Facebook page of the Federal Territories Ministry.

Commenting further, Annuar said the Hindu community now had a clearer view and better understanding of the Thaipusam celebrations.

"The NSC takes a serious view of the matter and DBKL will carry out enforcement to ensure all conditions are complied with,” he said.

On Saturday (Jan 23), it was reported Annuar’s announcement that the NSC had approved the chariot procession in conjunction with the Thaipusam celebrations.

He was reported to have said that the procession, from the temple in Jalan Bandar to Batu Caves on Jan 27 and the return journey on Jan 29, would adhere to the conditions and standard operating procedures stipulated by DBKL.

However, many were concerned and worried that the procession might lead to more Covid-19 infections.

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