Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Anatomy of an obsequious Hand-Kisser

"Kiss his hand? When did I kiss his hand? Show me where I did that!" ~ Kamalanathan, BN's candidate for Hulu Selangor

Kamalanathan loses cool over criticisms
By Clara Chooi | The Malaysian Insider

KUALA KUBU BARU, April 21 — As a public relations manager, P. Kamalanathan hardly loses his cool.

The calm exterior of the 44-year-old finally cracked yesterday when he was made to answer to allegations that his bid to win this Sunday’s Hulu Selangor by-election would be at the cost of his pride and identity as a member of the Indian community.

The Barisan Nasional (BN) candidate was asked to comment about his overdependence on Umno leaders to win the by-election race and how he was seemingly willing to sacrifice the community’s struggles by kowtowing to his Muslim leaders.

This, Kamalanathan was told, was illustrated once when he kissed the hand of Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin and when he promised to deliver Hulu Selangor as a “gift” to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak.

Since being named as a candidate, he has also defended Malay rights group Perkasa, a move that earned him plenty of criticism.

A shocked-looking Kamalanathan immediately replaced his smile with a frown and quickly defended his move.

“Kiss his hand? When did I kiss his hand? Show me where I did that,” he exclaimed, looking miffed when asked at an unplanned press conference in Ladang Kerling near here.

He said that even if he had indeed kissed Muhyiddin’s hand, it was not a wrongful act but was merely a depiction of Malaysian culture.

When asked about how the act might show signs that he was willing to sacrifice Indian pride for the sake of winning the by-election, Kamalanathan looked further agitated.

“Oh my God! This is culture we are talking about. If someone can say that culture is selling pride then I do not know what they are talking about.

“I am shocked that people can compare culture to pride,” he said.

The MIC information chief insisted that it was in Malaysian culture to show such acts of respect to the elders.

“Every child is taught to respect their elders. I was taught the same thing,” he said.

Kamalanathan was also queried on Pakatan Rakyat’s (PR) occasional reference to how he, as a first-time candidate, had to hide behind the Umno top guns like Muhyiddin and Najib in order to win himself support.

Selangor Mentri Besar Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim had pointed out yesterday how the by-election was really an Umno show in view of the large number of banners containing Najib’s face instead of Kamalanathan.

[Read the rest here.]

Kamalanathan wasn't lying. A close analysis of the photo above reveals that he was actually kissing his own hand. However, for public relations purposes, he wanted his gesture to look like subservience to the arrogant mud-faced Umno warlord....

Ah... Malaysian politics!