It began on 23rd night at around 8:00 PM when I saw NGF guards placing those polyethylene barriers to block the lorry the guards thought would be bringing in the chairs and tables for the meeting. They did not know the chairs had been delivered at 2:00 PM to my house. I thought the barriers would be removed by the next morning and that would be the end of it.
Alas, that was not to be. First came the Rela men. Later in the morning, the auxiliary police from DRB-Hicom arrived. The management probably feared there may be residents who are uneducated thugs. Many people perceive Rela guards as the thuggish variety, using questionable and rough tactics when dealing with the ‘adversaries’ they are paid to block.
Mr. Balachandran, GCD’s Community Manager, and I had met over the course of two days and I am certain he would have tried to convince his superior to change his mind. Bala is a reasonable man . I informed him the Committee would have accepted the decision if it had come shortly after the GCROA secretary sent in the request to Ben Yeoh. Since the decision came so late, and we would be using Seri Santai for only a few hours and for the last time too, if the clubhouse gets built over the next year, the decision by GCD was really a strange demonstration of intent to work closely with the residents.
But GCD would not budge. That is okay, we held the AGM elsewhere.
Bala and I spoke a few times yesterday right up until the last moment, and he too was concerned that things may get out of hand if the Rela men were not removed. When asked why they were upping the ante, Bala said their HQ had received some threatening phone calls and the staff were worried over their safety, hence the presence of the auxiliary police, complete with a submachine gun! I stated that he can be assured that no resident would do such a thing as harm anyone. If there are elements out there who may want to take advantage of the situation to create chaos, those elements are certainly not against the residents. So has GCD been a bad boy in the eyes of outsiders around here? I guess there is a third possibility.
I have a few pictures to share below. Arvin Menon has kindly pointed us to the pictures he has posted online: http://www.flickr.com/photos/76458930@N03/7010802829/
Finally, the first News report has surfaced. Check this out (Sin Chew): http://s13.postimage.org/t9oervm13/IMG01058_20120325_0903.jpg
Also reported in China News and Nanyang Siang Pau.