Samy Vellu cremated following send-off by hundreds

Malay Mail
Malay Mail

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 16 — At 5.40pm today, black smoke emerged from the chimney of Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) crematorium in Cheras to signify the cremation of former MIC president Tun S. Samy Vellu.

From as early as 10am, the crowd that reached hundreds of mourners had started to gather along the sidewalks outside the facility to pay their last respects to the icon of the country’s ethnic Indian community.

During the wake at the family’s residence earlier today, figures such as Deputy Yang di-Pertuan Agong Sultan Nazrin Muizzuddin Shah, former minister Tan Sri Shahrizat Jalil, and lawmakers such as Gobind Singh Deo had also attended.

In the afternoon, the procession began at the family home, with his son, Datuk Seri Vell Paari, leading the pallbearers to pass the casket to eight DBKL officials in white uniforms, who then carried it to the hearse.

A convoy of MIC flag bearers and police vehicles then escorted a silver Toyota Alphard decked with banana leaves and mini roses that made a stop at Menara Manickavasagam, the MIC headquarters, in the heart of the city as a final tribute to the leader that led the party for 31 years.

The convoy arrived at the crematorium around 4.45pm as another round of people said their final goodbyes while reciting Hindu prayers.

Besides Vell Paari, MIC leaders including the current president Tan Sri S A Vigneswaran and deputy Datuk Seri M. Saravanan stayed throughout the cremation.

Samy Vellu was the seventh MIC president and also the ethnic Indian party’s longest-serving, holding the position for 31 years.

He was Sungai Siput MP from September 1974 to March 2008 and among the longest-serving ministers lasting 29 years.

He served as works minister from June 1983 to June 1989, and held that post again from May 1995 to March 2008.

He also held the ministerial portfolios for energy and telecommunications from June 1989 to May 1995, as well as works and public amenities from September 1979 to June 1983.