PUTRAJAYA: Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim always prioritised the agenda of “Empowering the Indian Community” in line with the process of national development, says Deputy Minister of Entrepreneurship Development and Cooperatives Datuk R. Ramanan.

Speaking to reporters after officiating the launch of the Sure Heboh Programme here today, he said the prime minister was fully committed to ensuring the agenda’s success.

“The MADANI government has never marginalised any race. But certain parties continue to play up the sentiment of ‘hate politics’, claiming that the Prime Minister is marginalising the Indians.

“We must be wary. Surely, we must ensure the agenda of empowering Indians is guaranteed. That is also the ‘principle’ that I hold on to as the Deputy Minister of Entrepreneurship Development and Cooperatives,” he said.

He said that on Friday (May 3), he had announced the approval of a RM100,000 grant for the benefit of Koperasi Pengusaha Restoran India Malaysia Bhd (KOPRIMAS) through the Cooperative Strengthening Programme under the Cooperatives Commission of Malaysia (SKM).

He also recently announced additional funds of RM30 million for the SPUMI Financing Scheme (SPUMI Goes Big) and a special fund of RM50 million from Amanah Ikhtiar Malaysia (AIM) for the Prosperty, Empowerment & New Normal For Indian Women (PENN) programme that are set to benefit over 10,000 Indian women entrepreneurs.

He said all these initiatives for the Indian community entrepreneurs could not have been realised without the prime minister’s mandate.

“So, stop all these malicious accusations. We must stand together and be united to make the mission of transforming the Indian community a success. We must move forward.

“My advice to the Indian community is to capitalise on the various assistance, initiatives and opportunities provided by the government to improve their businesses for a better future for the Indian community, especially in business,” he said.

Ramanan also hit out at certain parties, especially politicians who held no posts, for claiming that Anwar never did anything for the Indian community.

“If you want to blame the PM for everything, how come you never contested in any election? If you are so good, then stand as an independent and show your greatness.

“Instead, they come to the by-election to show as if they are fighting for the community,” he said.