THAIPUSAM celebration is just around the corner. For a disabled devotee like me and many others, Thaipusam looks bleak as we cannot fully take part in the religious festival due to the lack of disabled facilities in Batu Caves.
The disabled group, especially Damai Disabled Persons Association members, have for the past 10 years been advocating the need for cable car services in Batu Caves, mainly to cater for disabled devotees.
The said project not only will benefit the physically challenged devotees but also senior citizens, yet I have not seen any changes.
Several years ago, we appealed to the temple management to revive the cable car services.
A few years later, the temple management made an announcement about reviving the cable service. I was delighted when the announcement was made. In fact, I personally have made many trips to Batu Caves just to oversee the progress of the cable car construction.
Sometime last year, the construction of the cable car was halted as the Selayang Municipal Council (MPS) issued a stop work order on the cable car project for the alleged failure of the temple management to obtain relevant approval before commencing the construction work.
Thereafter, we have not heard any progress on this matter, be it from MPs or the temple management. I sincerely hope that all parties involved in the said issue will put their differences behind them and concentrate on completing the cable car project.
The disabled Hindu community in this country had waited long enough for a lifetime opportunity to fulfil their vows and seek Lord Muruga’s blessing during Thaipusam or any other day.
It is the temple management’s responsibility to find a positive resolution with MPS to ensure that the cable car project is completed without further delay.
I hope that next year, I will be able to write about my experience participating in this auspicious religious celebration and the closure of having fulfilled my vows.
Damai Disabled Persons Association