Monday, March 03, 2008

Indian Muslims in Malaysia want to be called Malays

A section of the ethnic Indian Muslim community living in Malaysia want to be known as Malays rather than Indians and have petitioned the government to streamline the laws accordingly.

Members of the Malaysian Indian Muslim Youth Movement (Gepima) want to be known as Malays and not Indians since the the country's constitution states that an Indian is a Malay "if he professes the Muslim religion, habitually speaks Malay and conforms to Malay custom".

"I am a second generation Malaysian and I can safely say that from wedding rituals to the food we eat and the language we speak, we conform to Malay customs all the way," said Gepima president Mohamed Kader Ali.

Syed Osman Mohamed, Ali's 24-year-old son, said

we feel uncomfortable to be known as Indians, because people automatically think we are Hindus when we are actually Muslim.


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