Raj Salutes Defenders Of Bukit Kepong
SHAH ALAM, Sept 8 – “Don’t worry sir, we will defend this place. We would rather die than yield.”
Former police chief of the Pagoh district Datuk Seri JJ Raj still remembers the words spoken to him 61 years ago.
The speaker was sergeant Jamil Mohd Shah, one of the 20 police personnel who defended the Bukit Kepong station in Muar against communist attackers on Feb 23 1950.
Raj, who was in charge of 20 police stations including Bukit Kepong, said: ” Sergeant Jamil did not seem the least bit afraid when he promised to defend Bukit Kepong and protect the people and their families.”
He was speaking at a press conference organised by the Malaysian Peace Foundation here today. Also present were foundation chairman Tan Sri Samsuri Arshad, deputy chairman Tan Sri Norian Mai, former Special Branch director Datuk Zulkifli Abdul Rahman and foundation trustees Tan Sri Jamil Johari and Datuk Seri Azman Ujang.
Twenty-seven policemen and their families were killed in the attack by about 180 communists which began at about 4.30am. Some of them were burned alive.
“Sergeant Jamil stood his ground as his colleagues and family members fell all around him,” Raj said.
“Three times Mat Indera asked him to surrender with the promise that no harm would be done to him. Three times rejected the offer outright. He was the last man standing and he fought to the death.”
Raj, who is 90, said he was recalling this painful episode in the nation’s history that people would appreciate the sacrifices made the defenders of Bukit Kepong.
He said the statements made by some people who did not seem to understand the significance of the resistance of the policemen to the communist onslaught saddened him.