PETALING JAYA: An inquiry into alleged police violence during a demonstration heard a witness testify that he was hit with a jet of water and dragged to a Black Maria by no fewer than five policemen.
Parti Keadilan Rakyat deputy youth chief Badrul Hisham Shaharin said he was then handcuffed to another person and taken to the Jalan Hang Tuah police station (formerly Pudu Prison).
He gave evidence yesterday at the start of an eight-day hearing conducted by the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (Suhakam) into the "Bloody Sunday" incident of May 28 against fuel price hikes.
Badrul said he was standing beside DAP leader Ronnie Liu that day. He said before that, he had signalled to a policeman standing above the water cannon truck to give the demonstrators five minutes to disperse. He said he was given a thumbs-up, but two minutes later he was hit by the water jet.
"I could not hear the three warnings given to us to disperse as it was inaudible and given at the same time when Ronnie was speaking over the loud-hailer," said Badrul.
In the Black Maria, Badrul said he saw Keadilan deputy secretary-general Zahir Hassan, who was bleeding from the mouth, nose and cheeks.
Badrul acknowledged that there were some police officers who showed concern and wanted to help.
The protest was organised by a coalition of NGOs, Keadilan, Parti Sosialis Malaysia, PAS, and university students, under the group name Protes.
Apart from Badrul, Keadilan information bureau chief Chua Tian Chang and Federal Reserve Unit cameraman L/Cpl Mohd Nasarudin Hashim also testified yesterday.
Suhakam's panel comprised commissioners Datuk Dr Michael Yeoh, Datin Paduka Zaitoon Othman and Datuk Choo Siew Kion. It was chaired by Datuk K.C. Vohrah.
Chua testified that the warnings to disperse was issued 15 minutes after the speeches started. He said he moved closer to the water cannon truck as he could not hear the announcement being made above the speeches and the crowd's cheering.
The inquiry viewed a tape recording made by Mohd Nasarudin.
The hearing continues.