KUALA LUMPUR, April 29 — MIC is ready to field Indian Muslim candidates in the upcoming 15th General Election (GE15) if needed, MIC president Tan Sri SA Vigneswaran said.

He said the matter has been discussed with the party’s central working committee recently.

“We (MIC) really don’t have any issue. If in places (Areas) we face pressure that there needs to be a Muslim candidate for certain reasons, we are prepared because we have Indian Muslim candidates who can contest.

“As long as they are MIC (traditional) seats, we will contest, we will decide who contests,” he told reporters after attending a breaking of fast event here tonight. MIC deputy president Datuk Seri M Saravanan was also present at the event.

Vigneswaran also promised to not only ensure the rights of Indians, but that MIC would continue to protect and assist the Indian Muslim community in the country.

The prime minister’s special envoy to India and South Asia insisted that the 76-year-old party had never sidelined the Indian Muslim community as claimed by some parties.

Vigneswaran also assured that Indian Muslim children will be given the same rights in scholarships and loans by Maju Institute of Educational Development, an entity owned by MIC.

He said he would also work to resolve the nationality issues of Indian Muslims who have yet to possess identification cards.

On Umno and Barisan Nasional’s (BN) decision to go solo for GE15, Vigneswaran said currently MIC agreed and was ready to cooperate with other parties after GE15 should there be any party willing to join BN.

In the previous GE14, MIC contested nine parliamentary seats, Sungai Siput and Tapah in Perak; Sungai Buloh, Hulu Selangor, Kapar and Kota Raja (Selangor), Port Dickson (Negri Sembilan), Segamat (Johor) and Cameron Highlands (Pahang).

The party only managed to win two seats, Tapah and Cameron Highlands. — Bernama