Ramadan bazaars are a big part of the Raya celebrations in Malaysia. It’s a great opportunity for us to taste all those Raya favourites as well as support the local business ventures of everyday Malaysians. However, it’s unfortunate that some have used this happy occasion to take advantage of the livelihood of the stall owners.
Local businessmen have urged authorities to take action against the ‘mafia’ who control the yearly Ramadhan street bazaar at the Masjid India area of Kuala Lumpur.
Head of Masjid India Business Association Ameer Ali Mydin has told Free Malaysia Today that “there is a ‘mafia in charge’ of the Ramadhan street bazaar at Masjid India” and if “anyone lodges a report, they’ll be finished.” He has even been threatened with physical harm just for complaining about the issue!
“Nothing was done. Everyone just wants to be a hero and deny their inaction during the crisis. It seems no one can stop this nonsense,” said Ameer.
As the head of the association, he has urged Bukit Bintang MP Fong Kui Lun to come to the area and look into the matter properly as an “association” had been selling stall lots for years. He did not specify which association this was.
This report is the most recent of incidences that have come to light with the “Ramadan bazaar scandal” at Jalan Masjid India which involved one of Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia’s youth members, Mohd Noorhisyam.
The Bukit Bintang PPBM youth chief has been accused of profiting from the bazaar via misusing political connections to secure 80 bazaar lots and renting it out for as high as RM5,000 per lot.
Ameer told FMT that he had received feedback that “rentals” for the stalls could reach as high as RM18,000 during the last week of Ramadan!
He has also said that DBKL had managed the bazaar poorly, leading to traffic jams and littering. He added that the application for the bazaar should not have been approved and urged DBKL to take responsibility for the situation instead of “hiding behind politicians”.
How unfortunate that something meant to be part of a lively and festive season has become a squabble for money and opportunism. Hopefully this issue will be resolved soon!
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