Zalman Zulkifli | Updated: April 21, 2014
WE recently lost Mr. Karpal Singh. A lot have been said about him. And we learned a lot more about him too as his friends shared a bit more about his past.
My tribute to Karpal is really for who he is and what he stood for.
We grew up under the shadow of giants: Giants like Mahathir, Ling Liong Sik, Samy Vellu, Lim Kit Siang and yes Karpal Singh.
Their names emblazoned the news and have etched an everlasting image in our minds. What I admire is that Karpal knew he was fighting a lost cause. His whole life, he knew that change in the country doesn’t just come from politics. Many more things have to change, before change happens.
And yet, he did his part. In his humble digs, simple life, straight shooting kind of way, he kept the fight going. He won. He lost. He’s ridiculed, sent to jail, and fate dealt him a cruel blow of being paralyzed and what did Karpal do?
He kept on fighting. Each and every step of the way. Losing a lot more than winning, he simply kept on going. This tribute isn’t about what Karpal stood for, it is about Karpal — Karpal who made a life of living his principles, standing by it, and teaching his children the values they carry today.
He made sure that the torch keeps on shining. He fought for the weak, the poor, the victim. And as we now know, he fought often for free. Simply because it was the right thing to do. And because, he can.
The measure of a man is measured by what he leaves behind. And Karpal left behind a legacy of what is right is right, and what is wrong is wrong. And he lived his life by his belief. And he left behind another generation that will continue to fight the fight: the fight for their victims and their rights.
We all may not agree with Karpal all the time. But it is the Karpals of the world that changes our beliefs in what is right, and what is wrong: people who believed in something so strongly, that they give their whole life, and their own life in pursuit of change.
To the family of the late Karpal we would like to share our condolences, and to thank you for your support of him. You too made Karpal the Tiger that he was. We are truly sorry for your loss and wish you the strength to continue the journey that Karpal has laid down thus far.
And to the politicians who said something stupid and insensitive about the late Mr. Karpal, we wish you a good life. Thank you for ensuring that we know who you are, and how stupid you could be. Karpal probably can’t say it better: “Jangan main-main…”