A long time ago, probably three to four years ago, there was a candlelight vigil in front of a police station. A small crowd was waiting for the police to release several individuals after being arrested for protesting something. I think it was against the Internal Security Act.

The police was unhappy. So they warned the crowd to disperse. After some warnings, an officer shouted, “Tangkap! Tangkap!” A game of cat and mouse began.

Literally, tangkap it means capture in Malay. A more enlightened translation within context will be, arrest them.

I was reminded of the story when a small crowd of probably 500 tried to join the main Bersih protest group yesterday…

…only to be chased by a horde of charging cops.

The group dispersed with each person tried to run away. No fighting back. This is what typically will happen when a peaceful protest is met with brute force (note what some of the officers were holding; you can download this picture and see it more clearly.).

Berita Harian and the New Straits Times had to doctor a picture to show that the Bersih protest was violent.

I thought the situation was particularly funny. I almost laughed when I shot the scene. I would have laughed if I had not been too worried about my own safety. Safety from whom?

From the cops of course. In Malaysia, if you merely practice your individual rights when the government does not like it, the police will get you. Hell, wearing yellow shirt will get your arrested. Lighting a candle will get you arrested. Etc.

One Response to “[2395] Tangkap! Tangkap!”

  1. on 11 Jul 2011 at 09:17 Bobby

    It’s pathetic when NST clearly uses a pic of a PLO protester.
    For god’s sake, do they have any brain cells left? Do they just think people are as dumb as they are?

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