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Interlok issue: Word pariah is to be dropped

KUALA LUMPUR: The offensive word `pariah' has been dropped from the
literature textbook `Interlok', Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri
Muhyiddin Yassin told the Dewan Rakyat Thursday.
The word was among several other references deemed offensive by the
Indian community which has been excised from the book to be used as
form five Malay literature text.

Muhyiddin said the word pariah has now been replaced with "golongan
yang sama" (the same group).
Muhyiddin, who is also Education Minister, said a panel formed to
study the objections raised by the Indian community had also gone
through a total of 106 amendment proposals to the school version of
the novel.
But it was whittled down to 19 issues that the panel deemed related to
the sensitivities of the Indian community. He said of the 19 issues,
three were considered solved with the omission of the word pariah'
from the novel.
He said the panel ruled that three other issues - the fact that Hindus
revere the cow as a holy animal, the safety of Maniam's wife in India
and the description of an Indian wedding as tedious - did not touch on
the community's sensitivities.
He said seven other issues were marked with errata for editing or
omission and six more issues raised were solved by changing terms and
dropping phrases.
He said the a glossary will be included in the book to explain various
phrases and concepts in the novel.

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