PETALING JAYA: Students in universities should be allowed to make their own choices in politically-charged issues, said a law student who became an overnight sensation after a video of her posing bold questions during a forum in Universiti Utara Malaysia (UUM) went viral on Monday night.
K.S. Bawani told The Malay Mail she felt compelled to raise her questions to the panel during the "Question and Answer" session at a forum on politics and undergraduates on Dec 8 last year because of the one-sided nature of the discussion.
Bawani said that if everyone had watched the complete four parts of the forum, rather than only the final part where the scene took place between her and Sharifah, they would be more enraged.
"From the beginning itself, they were playing videos of Bersih, calling them perhimpunan kotor (dirty assembly). It didn't make sense to me. They were attacking the opposition, but they did not name the people they were targetting,"said Bawani.
She said that no apologies have been made to her on the way she was treated and the university authorities too did not attempt to contact her and seek clarification on what had happened.
Bawani said she was sadder that many of her fellow students had also blamed her initially for the altercation which took place between her and the moderator.
"After watching the video, they have all been supporting me," she said.
Bawani said that the forum reeked of an attempt to "brainwash" the students and also questioned the motive of handing out 10 Samsung Galaxy Note 2 mobile devices for free at the conclusion.
"It was buying the audience," said Bawani, who also questioned the timing of such forums with the general elections being just round the corner.
Moderators' tirade in viral video transcribed
THE MALAY MAIL transcribes the part where a UUM student, K.S. Bawani, was cut off by a moderator at a forum on politics in a video that went viral and caused the setting up of Facebook pages in support of the student.
Moderator Sharifah Zohra Jabeen Syed Shah Miskin: Listen ... listen ... listen listen... listen.. Listen.. Miss Bhavani, thank you very much for coming up and having the guts.
This is our programme and we allowed you to speak.
When I speak, your listen. Let me speak ... Let me speak.
You see, students in the hall, 2,800 students everywhere, did I give her respect? I came to here and give her full respect as another woman.
Do you think I need to answer her questions with that attitude?
Kita tidak mahu burukkan dia (We do not want to condemn her).
Number two, I will ask you and I will also tell you the answers to your questions.
Do not compare Malaysia with other countries; if you wish to compare Malaysia with other countries, what are you doing in Malaysia?
Listen, what are you doing in Malaysia?
Go to Cuba, go to Argentina, go to Libya, go everywhere. Because you know what? All the students in this hall are happy with what the government does for them. I have never mentioned about A. Samad Said.
You are a student and much more intelligent. The difference between you and me is a degree and O'Levels.
What was the question just now? Ambiga what? Sreenevasan what?
Ambiga pencetus anarki (sparked anarchy) di Malaysia!
You must understand what anarchy is and you must understand what democracy is, and what is an assembly compromising of more than three people in one place at a time.
I didn't say the demo was illegal. I said that Ambiga sparked the demonstration and I will stand by that statement.
All of the people here are educated. Today, I'm very sorry to say, that you are less educated.
Do you know what education is?
Respect the adults.
Always differentiate the gap between the ages. That's why you have grandmothers, mothers, daughters, children and babies.
Do you think only humans have problems? I will show you who else has problems, Animal have problems too.
Cats have problems. When it asks for food, we kick, right? Allah made cats like that -- if it can talk, it will.
We are angry with dogs.....
What else have problems? Cows, goats too have problems.
... We slaughter them ... we humans are so cruel, right?
Fishes too have problems ...
We are human, and we have problems.
Remember, I support one thing that Ambiga fights for and that is human rights.
No matter what you say, you are still in UUM, respect all, you are still here.
If not, you are free to go to other universities.
We have to thank Ambiga because she has opened our minds about human rights. And this our right ...