‘I’m sorry’, says model for racist rants on FB
KUALA LUMPUR: Indians with bad behaviour.
These were the people whom Presana Narayanan (pic) — the 31-year-old model who sparked an outrage with her Facebook racist remarks against local Tamils — were targeting.
In an exclusive interview with The Malay Mail, she said her comments were not intended to hurt or anger anyone, especially the Tamils, but targeted at unsavoury characters she had come across.
“I never thought my comments would backfire and anger the Tamils as it was not my intention at all. My status update was spur-of-the moment and I did it because I was angry at badly behaved Indians,” she said when met at her house yesterday.
Presana related an incident that drove her to the edge and turned to the social networking site to vent her anger.
“I was checking my Facebook page in a cybercafe as I did not have internet connection at home.
“As I was browsing, this Indian man sitting beside me, nudged my leg with his leg in an inappropriate way. He kept on doing it until I had to change place, and out of anger, I updated my status like that.”
She wrote, among others, Tamils were “pariah”, “stoneheaded” and “originated from the jungle”.
It subsequently incensed a large segment of the community which started an “Anti Presana Narayanan” Facebook page.
Presana, who was in tears during the interview, said it was not the only incident that hit a raw nerve when it was related to the community.
“Tamil-speaking Indians, whom I had the misfortune to meet, have not exactly been saintly in manner. Many times when I was going back from work, a few groups of Indian guys would tease me with wolf-whistles and vulgar name-calling in Tamil.
Presana said her choice of words in the Facebook status did not reflect what she meant exactly.
“I was not targeting all Tamils. I was just speaking about Indians who had affected my life.
“I regretted what had happened and because of this, I had lost my job as a graphic designer for a business magazine. Not only that, my dreams to make my mark in the modeling industry had been shattered.
“This is a great enough punishment for me. Please don’t punish me further by posting derogatory comments. I hope with this public apology, the pages created against me will be deleted,” said the sole breadwinner of the family.
Her 57-year-old homemaker mother also sought public understanding. “We hope we can put this behind us and carry on with out lives.”
The organisers of a beauty pageant and a model search contest she took participated had also dumped her as a finalist, saying Presana failed to fit the criteria in their respective competitions due to her racist comments.
Last week, three police reports were lodged against her in Seremban and Cheras with the complainants urging police to arrest her over the seditious remarks.
At last count, the “Anti Presana Narayanan” page have more than 10,000 rallying against her.