About 500 angry parents and other members of the Indian community gathered outside a secondary school here on Monday to protest racial slurs and abuse allegedly uttered by a teacher against Indian students recently.
The crowd began gathering outside SMK Telok Panglima Garang’s main entrance near here at noon and dispersed about two hours later.
The headmaster was on leave, so some teachers accepted on his behalf copies of police reports made by a Form Four student and a Form Five student. According to the police reports, the female history teacher had allegedly called Indian students in a Form Four and a Form Five class ‘keling pariah’, ‘Negro’, ‘black monkeys’ as well as other derogatory names.
The teacher had also purportedly said that ‘Indians came from dogs’ and the community members were stupid and prone to thuggery and thievery.
The police reports also alleged that the teacher had said that Indians were the ‘children of prostitutes’ and the community’s youths ‘did not have testicles’ on July 17 and 22, and had also purportedly beaten up some Indians students.
The Form Four student also alleged in his report that the teacher had written the word ‘keling pariah’ on the board and lost her cool when the Indian students in the class told her that they did not like being called names.
Coalition of Malaysian Indian NGOs secretary Gunaraj George, who was among those who handed over the police reports, said that exposure to such abuse would only breed hatred and racial polarisation in schools.
“No one in his or her right frame of mind would have said these things. Given this, the best option would be for the teacher to be assigned to a desk job and not be allowed to be near youngsters anymore,” he said.
Meanwhile, Deputy Education Minister Dr Wee Ka Siong said the schoolteacher might be sacked if the allegations proved true.
The allegations were serious as no one was allowed to insult others, especially in a school environment, said Dr Wee, who was asked to comment on the incident when visiting a nine-year-old accident victim at the Sultanah Aminah Hospital in Johor Baru.
He added that the ministry was awaiting an official report before taking any action.