Kuala Lumpur, Mar 3: Members of the Malaysian Indian Muslim Youth Movement (Gepima) want to be known as Malays and not Indians.
And they do not think this is an outrageous request since the Federal Constitution states that an Indian is Malay "if he professes the Muslim religion, habitually speaks Malay and conforms to Malay custom". Muslims of Indian origin practise these traits today, claimed Gepima president Mohamed Kader Ali. "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," Ali said.
"As such, Gepima is appealing to the government to streamline the laws and recognise Muslims born after independence as Malays in their birth certificate. We have been facing this problem for the past 50 years," the New Straits Times Online quoted Ali, as saying.
"We have written several letters to the National Registration Department but it keeps saying that it can't do anything about this," he added.